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Tenants in the Forest Park trailer court say they have few, if any, affordable options. Some officials see a warning sign of a worsening housing crisis to come.
Since the first big winter storms, snow on the western Kenai Peninsula has collapsed roofs, broken gas meters and raised backcountry avalanche risk. “I think we can safely say that this was the most snow in any winter for the northwest Kenai Peninsula since the winter of 2011, 2012,” said Rick Thoman.
Anchorage municipal officials say at least 16 roofs have buckled in the city this winter under heavy snow and ice, and they’re wary of additional collapses after another storm dropped more snow this weekend.
The State of Alaska recently received $38 million from the Department of Housing and Urban Development to ease the burden of climate change. The money was made available through the Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery Program. These funds are aimed at helping communities better rebound from presidentially declared disasters, but Salazar says the state will be allowed to allocate the new funds for preventative measures.
The relocation between from Newtok to Mertavik has taken time and community members stay patient as local, state, and federal agencies figure out the complex funding and logistical hurdles.
In 2016 Renato Alberti, who had overseen the structure for 35 years, noticed a vertical crack in one of the outer walls. Alberti, now age 67, filled the gap with repair foam, but the crack reopened after only a few days. Alberti thought something unusual must be happening. Perhaps the mountain was becoming unstable.
Libraries at two Anchorage elementary schools — Klatt and Spring Hill — were closed after the maintenance department identified ceiling damage. The district also decided “out of an abundance of caution” to proactively close the libraries of Bear Valley Elementary, Fire Lake Elementary, and Ravenwood Elementary, which share the same building design with Klatt and Spring Hill.
A recent Interior Department grant aims to help residents in Newtok move to higher ground, but it’s just a sliver of what’s needed.
Warming soils beneath Utqiagvik are triggering erosion that threatens homes, infrastructure and cultural resources. The North Slope has seen some of the fastest changes in coastal erosion in the nation.
The Arctic hamlet of Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T., is collapsing into the ocean as it loses up to a meter of coastline each year. The people who live there are in a race against time to preserve their way of life — and their community — before it is washed away.
Golovin was hurt worse than other places in the Norton Sound region by the remnants of typhoon Merbok as it swirled up through Bering Sea last weekend. Repairing the damage is going to take time — and the clock is ticking on winter’s arrival.
The powerful remnants of Typhoon Merbok pounded Alaska’s western coast on Sept. 17, 2022, pushing homes off their foundations and tearing apart protective berms as water flooded communities. Storms aren’t unusual here, but Merbok built up over unusually warm water. Its waves reached 50 feet over the Bering Sea, and its storm surge sent water levels into communities at near record highs along with near hurricane-force winds.