Fairbanks North Star Borough

KUAC file photo

Officials with Flint Hills Resources Alaska announced today that they will halt processing crude oil at the company’s North Pole refinery over the next few months and shut down the facility. As KUAC’s Tim Ellis reports, company officials decided to shut down the refinery because of rising costs to run it and shrinking profit margins – and ongoing costs of cleaning up groundwater tainted by an industrial solvent that leaked from the refinery for years.

U.S. Army

City and borough government officials here in Alaska are a bit on edge about Congress’s failure to provide funding for the PILT program, which helps local governments with a lot of federal land in their areas. The program is especially critical to smaller communities like Delta Junction.

Elbasan Over

Jan 24, 2014
Clean Air Fairbanks, Fairbanks North Star Borough

The Fairbanks North Star Borough is dropping a controversial North Pole subdivision  plan. The Elbasan  Acres development included 115 residential lots and a school site on over 600 acres. As KUAC’s Dan Bross reports its drawn opposition due to concerns about the area's already poor air quality.

Tim Ellis/KUAC

The operator of the North Pole refinery wants to state to set a lower standard for cleaning up the sulfolane groundwater-contamination problem in the North Pole area. Flint Hills Resources Alaska has asked the head of the state Department of Environmental Conservation to set a less-stringent cleanup level for the industrial solvent that leaked into the groundwater for more than a decade before Flint Hills bought the refinery in 2004. The requests could delay cleanup for several months.

Alaska Division of Air Quality

The controversial air-quality regulations that state officials have proposed for the Fairbanks-area residents are aimed at reducing pollution from wood-burning heating systems. They do not apply to coal-fired systems, which are becoming increasingly popular because coal is even cheaper than wood. That worries local and state officials, because burning coal releases many of the same pollutants as wood.

Nenana Continues Borough Formation Study

Nov 20, 2013

Fairbanks, AK - The City of Nenana continues to look at borough formation.  Last year, the legislature appropriated 75-thousand dollars for a study to investigate the benefits and pitfalls of establish a new Borough.  A Juneau Based community planning firm released a draft of the study earlier this month.

New Trail on Ester Dome in the Works

Oct 18, 2013

Fairbanks, AK - The Fairbanks North Star Borough, the State Department of Transportation and an area trail users group are in the beginning stages of a cooperative plan to build a new trail along Ester Dome Road.  The trail would be used for the annual Equinox Marathon, but it’s also a way to improve safety for runners, bikers and other residents who regularly use the road for recreation.

Assembly May Approve Sale of Park Land in Two Rivers

Sep 26, 2013

Fairbanks, AK - The Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly could approve the sale of six acres in the Two Rivers area.  The Pleasant Valley Community Association wants to use the land for public recreation.

Dan Bross

The recent detection of 2 cases of rabies in wolves trapped south of the Brooks Range has prompted concern about whether the deadly disease has re-emerged in the interior.  As KUAC’s Dan Bross reports, many pet owners in Fairbanks are getting their animals vaccinated as a precaution.

Fairbanks, AK - For nearly a decade, the Fairbanks North Star Borough and Chena Hot Springs Resort have been working on a land exchange sale.  The Resort would buy 1480 acres in exchange for a series of easements that allow access to neighboring Borough property, which includes access to land popular for recreation.  Last fall, the Assembly passed an ordinance to approve the sale.  The deal is at an impasse, because neither side can agree to the value of the property.