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Environment

The Parnell administration and Flint Hills Resources reached agreement on a settlement for pollution cleanup at the former refinery site in North Pole, while negotiations and a court fight continue on what is to be done off the property.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected two high-profile Alaska cases dealing with federal authority in Alaska, largely because of a six-letter word Congress slipped into the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act 34 years ago.
Ocean waters are getting more acidic, spelling trouble for shell-bearing fish, corals and the ecosystems that depend on them, but federal agencies have lagged in their efforts to understand the problem and respond to it, said an investigative report issued Tuesday by the GAO.
Interior Alaska’s hot and dry summer of 2013, coupled with an invasion of insect pests, has taken a steep toll on the region’s birch trees, experts say.
For the past 32 years, the distinction of enduring Alaska's wettest day belonged to Angoon, a town of 450 on Admiralty Island in Southeast Alaska, which supposedly received 15.2 inches of rain in 24 hours on Oct. 12, 1982.  
Which version of summer you witnessed depends on where you live in the nation's largest state. The report illustrates the immense size and variety of Alaska weather and terrain. 
Kenai Peninsula residents say hundreds of dead jellyfish have washed ashore in recent weeks. But biologists say the die-off is a normal part of the jellyfish life cycle.
A Friday earthquake centered about 24 miles southeast of Talkeetna occurred at 7:53 p.m. and followed on the heels of a 6.24-magnitude quake that struck Thursday morning about 60 miles southwest of Talkeetna. But Friday's shake wasn't a true aftershock, the state seismologist says. 
A planned construction and demolition debris monofill in Chugiak has been delayed by contamination concerns potentially linked to an old municipal landfill next door. 
Politicians’ claims of unique powers to unlock the refuge to oil development -- and criticisms of opponents for failing to accomplish that elusive goal -- have been staples of Alaska campaign rhetoric for decades.

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