Bering Sea

Courtesy of Phil Zavadil

A fuel ration on the Pribilof Island of St. Paul ended Tuesday after more than a month and a half of limiting fuel for both residents and fishermen.

The Bering Sea community announced the ration in late February after bad weather repeatedly canceled the arrival of a fuel barge. 

The North Pacific Fuel barge finally arrived at the dock on Tuesday, according to City Manager Phil Zavadil. The city had been waiting on its arrival since November of last year. 

Courtesy of Bill Prout

A group of Bering Sea crabbers say the pandemic has slowed their fishing season, and they want more time to catch their quota before the state shuts down their season next week.

But the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has denied their request for an extension, citing low population numbers and an upcoming mating season. 

For the few boats fishing bairdi crab this year, there could be a lot at stake if they don't have time to catch their full quota. 

Hope McKenney/KUCB

The COVID-19 pandemic has already disrupted Alaska's winter Bering Sea fishing seasons, closing plants and adding quarantine-related complications for crews.

Now, some boats are contending with a shortage of fuel at a key island port, leaving them with less time to catch their quota. 

Courtesy of Tacho

While much of Alaska has been bitterly cold this month, the Aleutian Islands and Alaska Peninsula have been extraordinarily mild. 

It's part of the recent warming pattern in the Bering Sea, and communities along the Aleutian Chain can expect a similar trend moving forward, says Rick Thoman, a climate specialist with the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Bering Sea Storm Could Set Record Low Pressure

Dec 29, 2020
Courtesy of Rick Thoman

The collision of a warm, wet weather front with a mass of cold air from Siberia could set a new record: the lowest barometric pressure recorded in the North Pacific. 

That could mean hurricane-force winds and high seas in the Southwestern Bering Sea. 

"This storm is generating a lot of interest from weather watchers around the world," said climate specialist Rick Thoman of the University of Alaska Fairbanks.