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Coast Guard initiates Arctic Shield 2015

Since 2007, the Coast Guard has purposefully expanded its reach into the Arctic. Arctic Shield consolidates Coast Guard Arctic missions including a year-round focus on educational outreach and improving community, tribal, local and state government relationships. Arctic Shield 2015, which kicked off in June, consists of comprehensive Coast Guard operations to protect the Arctic maritime community.


Boom feature photo

Here comes the boom

You can’t just walk into Kotzebue. It’s not that easy. The little city is out on the northern tip of Baldwin Peninsula, 30 miles north of the Arctic Circle, where the sun never sets in late June.


A small boat crew from the Coast Guard Cutter Mellon conducts air operations training with a MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew while underway May 27, 2015. The crew of the Mellon, a 378-foot high-endurance cutter homeported in Seattle, has been patrolling the high seas in search of illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing activity in support of Operation North Pacific Guard. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

High-Seas Driftnets: Destroyers of the Deep

For Operation North Pacific Guard, USCGC Mellon combats illegal, unreported, unregulated fishing

For nearly a year, the net has been forgotten. The fishermen who placed it there never located the radio beacon attached to it, so with a shrug of their shoulders they moved on. Not a single one of them has lost a moment of sleep or wondered what became of it; they didn’t see the dolphins flailing or hear the cries of the whales as the driftnet ensnared entire pods. As weeks passed, the commotion and the scent of prey drew in sharks and seals, and one by one they swam into the wall, where they would either suffocate or starve. Suspended across five miles, the hungry net continues to feed: tuna, turtles, salmon, squid, even birds, until…

“Everything,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Roy Hawes, a boatswain’s mate assigned to U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Mellon. “Everything dies.”


Organizers of Coast Guard Base Kodiak's annual Earth Day cleanup event pose for a photo by Jewel Beach in Kodiak, Alaska, May 1, 2015. The Coast Guard Officer's Association of Kodiak sponsored the event, raising approximately $1,200 through a 5K run the weekend prior. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Diana Honings.

Cleaning for our future

Coast Guard members throughout Coast Guard Base Kodiak recently participated in an annual Earth Day cleanup around the base in an effort to support environmental programs and build community activism throughout the base.


Coast Guard members from Sector Juneau, Alaska, place boom into the water at Pirate Cove near Sitka during a spill response exercise Apr. 23, 2015.  The boom deployment was part of the Southeast Alaska Preparedness for Response Full Scale Exercise, a multi-agency drill intended to the test the Alaska Southeast Subarea Contingency Plan.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Shawn Eggert.

PREP-ed for Action: USCG, partners test contingency response plans in Sitka, Alaska

Alaska can present many challenges for response agencies in times of crisis, and plans for how to remove or prevent the spread of pollution are becoming increasingly important as the state sees more maritime traffic through its ports and waterways. That’s why the Coast Guard, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation and the city and borough of Sitka came together with several state, local and federal agencies as well as industry members to conduct the 2015 Southeast Alaska Preparedness for Response Exercise Program Full- Scale Exercise in Sitka, Alaska, Apr. 22-23.


Coast Guard Cutter SPAR sits moored in Nome, Alaska during their Arctic Shield 2014 deployment. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

CGC SPAR returns home from Arctic deployment

In the era of diminishing Arctic sea ice, the U.S. Coast Guard continually strives to build awareness, modernize governance and broaden partnerships. On the forefront of these missions is the crew of Coast Guard Cutter SPAR, who returned recently from a 38 day deployment in support of Operation Arctic Shield 2014.


Coast Guard Capt. Greg Stanclik, executive officer, Coast Guard Cutter Healy, looks out from the bridge of the Healy as it leaves the port of Seward, Alaska, Aug. 8, 2014. The crew and passengers of the Healy, a 420-foot icebreaker homeported in Seattle, and will travel to the Arctic Circle to conduct research as part of Alaska Shield 2014. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Shawn Eggert.

Coast Guard Cutter Healy travels new waters of discovery

SEWARD, Alaska – The name “Healy” carries a lot of history in Alaska and the Arctic. It was Capt. Michael “Roaring Mike” Healy who spent 20 years as judge, doctor and policeman to Alaskan natives as a member of the […]


Barry Hurst, a physical education instructor from the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn., and 1st Class Cadet Gabriel Patterson, prepare to test a submersible remote operated vehicle aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Healy in Seward, Alaska, Aug. 7, 2014. The Coast Guard Academy is one of 14 programs and agencies involved in the Coast Guard Research and Development Center's trip to the Arctic Circle as part of Alaska Shield 2014. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Shawn Eggert.

Coast Guard Research and Development Center teams with partner agencies for Arctic awareness

SEWARD, Alaska – For a second year, members of the Coast Guard Research and Development Center, based in New London, Connecticut, make their way to the large ice floes of the Arctic Ocean to conduct research and test new equipment […]


The Coast Guard Cutter Morgenthau and China coast guard vessel 2102 steam alongside each other during the transfer of the fishing vessel Yin Yuan in the North Pacific Ocean June 3, 2014. The Morgenthau crew was patrolling in support of Operation North Pacific Guard, the Coast Guard's component of a multi-lateral fisheries law enforcement operation designed to detect and deter illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activity. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Coast Guard Cutter Morgenthau.

Operation North Pacific Guard

Churning beneath the tumultuous surface of the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska is the life-blood of a multi-billion-dollar industry. The scaly, slimy and sometimes spiny natural resource plays a major part in feeding people all over the world, and […]


DRE Title

Know Your 17th District: Enforcement

The state of Alaska is a hotbed of maritime commerce. From the staggeringly large fishing industry to the vital export of petroleum to the growing tourism business, people all around the world rely on and enjoy the bounty that the […]


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