Archive for the ‘king cove’ Tag

Alaskans battle for survival against feds’ protection of migratory birds – Washington Times   Leave a comment

Alaskans battle for survival against feds’ protection of migratory birds – Washington Times.

“There is a safe and an easy way to help our fellow citizens, and the only thing standing in the way is our own federal government’s decision to place a higher value on the birds than it does on the health and the safety of my state’s citizens, and that is simply wrong,” Mrs. Murkowski said Wednesday at an Appropriations Committee hearing.

King Cove residents need road to provide access to medical treatment – Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Community Perspectives   Leave a comment

King Cove residents need road to provide access to medical treatment – Fairbanks Daily News-Miner: Community Perspectives.

Federal Rejection of Refuge Road Emblematic of Alaska’s Colonial Status   2 comments

Alaskan outrage grows as the need for the King Cove to Cold Bay road through the Izembek Refuge nearly cost of the life a 63-year-old resident of that Alaskan village.

It’s ironic that the president administration that bet its legacy on health care insurance coverage for all would then turn around and deny the most basic access (transportation), but that’s what we have right now.

I’m no fan of Lisa Murkowski, but she got a cheer from my family last night when, on national television, she said she wouldn’t object or stand in the way of King Cove residents who decide they have had enough and opt for “civil disobedience” in this case. The work on the road to Tanana illustrates that the villagers need not wait for permission to start building the road.

Federal lands belong to the people and the people of Alaska have too long acquiesced to the demands of a distant, uninterested and tyrannyical government. If the people of King Cove take their chainsaws into the refuge this summer and start clearing a pioneer road, Alaskans will be with them in spirit and some may join them in truth.

Environmental groups bitterly oppose a one-lane road that would be accessed only by King Cove residents for these sorts of emergencies. In 1997, Congress appropriated $37.5 million for water access to Cold Bay, including a $9 million hovercraft. They say that should be enough. The problem is that hovercraft do not work in high seas — well, actually, they don’t work on anything but placid seas. The Cold Bay area gets gale force winds on regular occasions. It is against federal law to fly helicopters over refuge lands. When the seas proved too dangerous to sealift the sick villager, a Coast Guard cutter moved in as close as possible and dispatched a helicopter, endangering the lives of everyone on board. Needed care was delayed for several hours and the patient was reported in critical condition yesterday.

The only thing standing in the way of a road is a federal government that believes it must protect Alaska from Alaskans, that we cannot be trusted to be good stewards of the land we love and have raised our children to honor and respect. Pretty birds remain more important than people to the Obama administration. 

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell’s decision is emblematic of Alaska’s colonial relationship with the federal government. In October, Alaska will have been a state for 55 years. We have the most stringent state environmental laws and regulations of the 50 states, although not nearly as complicated as California’s. What exactly must we do to prove that we care about our state’s environment at least as much as people who do not live here think they do? When exactly can we be trusted to act like a grown-up state?

If the answer is that we can never be trusted, then maybe we should take steps to reevaluate this relationship.

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