Fisheries observer Keith Davis on board a transshipment vessel in 2012. Video courtesy Hiep Tran.
With crab season under way in the Bering Sea, some 70 crab boats are bobbing around Alaska's Bristol Bay and the Aleutian Islands. About a dozen of those boats have a fisheries observer on board. The observers keep tabs on what the boats haul up from the deep.
Keith Davis was supposed to be one of those observers, but he went missing in September while working on a boat off the coast of South America. KUCB's John Ryan reports.
Screenshot of US Coast Guard video of Tor Viking rescuing French sailor.
A Shell Oil icebreaker gained two passengers in the middle of the Pacific Ocean on Tuesday. French sailor Manu Wattecamps-Etienne dove onto the icebreaker in 20-foot seas Tuesday, about 12 hours after sending out a distress signal. He made the desperate jump--with his cat--about 350 miles southeast of Alaska's Dutch Harbor.
Coast Guard video of the rescue shows the 30-foot sailboat bobbing like a cork next to the 270-foot Tor Viking II. The Frenchman clings like a koala to the rigging at the bow of his boat as it whips him around in nearly 50 mile-per-hour winds.
The sun sets on the Polar Pioneer in Unalaska's Broad Bay on Monday. KUCB/John Ryan photo.
Shell Oil's Polar Pioneer rig left Alaska's Dutch Harbor for Port Angeles, Washington, on Wednesday.
The energy giant's other Arctic rig, the Noble Discoverer, left Dutch Harbor for Everett, Washington, on Monday.
Other ships in Shell's Arctic fleet are expected to leave Alaska over the next couple of weeks, and the company has not disclosed the fate of the 400 employees who have worked on the project in Anchorage.
After sinking eight years and more than $8 billion into the effort, Shell Oil is pulling out of the Arctic Ocean, the company announced in a press release Sunday night.
Shell officials said the company safely drilled a well 6,800 feet beneath the floor of the Chukchi Sea this summer. They found indications of oil and gas there, but not enough to warrant further exploration.
“We thought it was the potential to be a multibillion-barrel prospect,” Shell Alaska spokesperson Meg Baldino said. “That is not the case. It is not commercial.”
The Transocean Polar Pioneer, a drill rig contracted by Royal Dutch Shell, has arrived in Dutch Harbor. The oil company plans to use the port as a hub this summer as part of their exploratory Arctic drilling effort.Tthere’s very little opposition in the tiny Alaskan town in comparison to that in Seattle, where some environmental activists went so far as to chain themselves to one of Shell’s Arctic drilling support vessels last month.
Rallies to protest Shell’s plans for exploratory drilling in the Arctic this summer will take place in Anchorage and Juneau today.
The protests are organized by a self-described 'ad hoc grassroots group' that includes members of REDOIL, Alaska Rising Tide, Chukchi Sea Watch and the Alaska Climate Action Network.
Danielle Redmond is an organizer for the Network. She expects between 10 and 50 people to gather in front of Juneau’s federal building. In Anchorage, she says between 50 and 100 people are likely to gather in front of a Shell Gas station on Northern Lights Boulevard.
A giant drill rig operated by Royal Dutch Shell undocked Monday morning from Terminal 5 in Seattle. The Polar Pioneer is headed for Dutch Harbor. It’s expected to arrive in 12 days.
According to the Coast Guard, 24 arrests were made as tugboats moved the rig out of port. A group of so-called "kayaktivists" formed a blockade in an attempt to stop the rig from departing. It's been docked in Seattle for the last month.