"Global warming may be unleashing new sources of heat-trapping methane from layers of oil and gas that have been buried deep beneath Arctic permafrost for millennia. As the Earth's frozen crust thaws, some of that gas appears to be finding new paths to the surface through permafrost that's starting to resemble Swiss cheese in some areas, scientists said."
Alaska and Hawaii
"Making good on its promise to jump-start Arctic offshore drilling, the Trump administration gave Italian oil company Eni a quick green light on Wednesday to drill exploratory wells off the coast of Alaska."
"The Trump administration has taken a key step toward paving the way for a controversial gold, copper and molybdenum mine in Alaska’s Bristol Bay watershed, marking a sharp reversal from President Barack Obama’s opposition to the project."
"Hawaii has become the first U.S. state to enact legislation to bring its environmental standards in line with the Paris climate accord, officials said on Wednesday, less than a week after President Donald Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the global agreement."
"The Arctic's record-warm winter has allowed thousands of square miles of sea ice off Alaska to melt more than a month early, leaving the shoreline vulnerable to waves and exposing dark ocean water to absorb more heat from the sun."
"Iowa's Republican senator on Wednesday raised concerns that U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry has commissioned a 'hastily developed' study of the reliability of the electric grid that appears 'geared to undermine' the wind energy industry."
"U.S. EPA [Friday] cleared a path for the Pebble mine to begin the permitting process, promising to scrap the Obama administration's proposed restrictions on the southwestern Alaska project."
"A small but dangerous parasite, the winter tick, is spreading north and west as winters become shorter and now is knocking at Alaska's border. The winter tick, which has already devastated moose populations in New England and the upper Midwest, has been confirmed in Canada's Yukon Territory and in the Northwest Territories, where it's infecting elk, mule deer and some moose."
"Emissions from thawing permafrost are now outpacing the uptake of carbon dioxide during the growing season, a new study suggests".
"The Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear a challenge to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision to designate 187,000 square miles of Alaska’s coast and waters a critical habitat for the threatened polar bear."