Alaska

MY WORLD INTERRUPTED

 

 

By Esau Sinnok, Arctic Youth Ambassador

Source: U.S. Department of the Interior

December 10, 2015--Close your eyes and picture your best memory with your family and friends. If you're like me, that memory is filled with the warmth and comfort of a familiar home. I hope that, unlike me, you are never asked to put a price on that home because of the effects of climate change.

Welcome to Shishmaref, Alaska, population: 650. We're a small Iñupiaq community where everyone knows each other. Shishmaref is a barrier island that has been eroding and flooding for the past 50 years -- even before disruption from climate change was widely recognized.

Over the past 35 years, we've lost 2,500 to 3,000 feet of land to coastal erosion. To put this in perspective: I was born in 1997, and since then, Shishmaref has lost about 100 feet. In the past 15 years, we had to move 13 houses -- including my dear grandma Edna’s house -- from one end of the island to the other because of this loss of land. Within the next two decades, the whole island will erode away completely.

PRESIDENT PROPOSES WILDERNESS PROTECTION FOR 1.4 MILLION ACRES IN ALASKA

 

Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

January 25, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - The U.S. Department of the interior announced Sunday that President Barack Obama plans to ask Congress to designate  12 million acres of Alaska’s 19 million acre Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as wilderness to protect it from oil and gas drilling.