Leaked budget cuts threaten Alaskan way of life and prosperity of coastal communities
By Becca Robbins Gisclair
March 13, 2017
Alaskans are used to weathering storms but these proposed budget cuts - 17% from NOAA, 14% from the Coast Guard and 25% from EPA - would disproportionately hurt Alaska, given our extensive coastline, and would threaten many services on which Alaskans rely.
The reported EPA cuts would completely eliminate the Alaska Native Villages Water programs and would reduce funding for climate change research and State funding – all essential to Alaska.
Proposed cuts would impact NOAA’s weather forecasts and satellites which provide vital information to keep Alaskans safe on land and at sea, fisheries monitoring and enforcement which keeps our fisheries healthy, and the Sea Grant program (proposed for complete elimination) which provides critical education, training and research.
Alaska depends on the Coast Guard to keep Alaskan waters safe and respond in times of disaster. At a time when vessel traffic is increasing in the Arctic, and the need for icebreakers is dire, this is no time to be cutting this budget.
Ocean Conservancy urges Congress to reject this budget, which would cause immediate harm to Alaska.
Becca Robbins Gisclair,
Received March 09, 2017 - Published March 13, 2017
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