A Happy Holidays from HIA Environmental to you and yours! We are excited to share the accomplishments of 2017 with you and get you thinking about 2018 – it’s going to be a busy year! The items below are a highlight of the highlights. A reminder that you can get updates about HIA Environmental by following us at Facebook.com/hiaenvironmental or signing up for our e-newsletter at www.hia-env.org
Looking Back in 2017
Indoor Air Quality
In March we began our work with Home Indoor Air Quality. We were awarded a grant through the Alaska Native Health Tribal Consortium to hire a second position. We conducted an air quality study to look at the effect of heating sources on PM 2.5 and carbon dioxide. The study resulted in some things that we can work towards to improve our indoor air quality and health. You can read the full report by clicking here. The results of the research was shared as a customized report for each participating household. Based on that work we are working towards a stove modification or replacement program.
Hoonah Native Forest Partnership
The Hoonah Native Forest Partnership continues to set the bar for workforce development and partnership in Southeast Alaska. This project is gaining steam as more people become excited about the possibilities of economic opportunity, environmental stewardship, and social development that will bloom from this effort in Hoonah. Here’s what the partnership and our crews have accomplished (it’s a lot!). This field season our local crew finalized data collection. The final results and watershed management plan will be written this winter so that we can start implementing projects next summer!
57 miles of spawning surveys,18 acres of forest structure surveyed,145 forest plots, 300 understory vegetation plots, 3 community surveys, 4 community meetings,15 full-time seasonal positions, 2 interns, 150,000 acres of vegetation mapped, $64,000 leveraged funding. 8 blueberry enhancement plots, 200 miles of roads surveyed for fish and water quality, 2,000 culverts inspected for fish passage, 350 stream crossings inspected for fish passage, 60 bridges inspected for fish passage, 9 stream condition surveys, 5 miles of stream condition surveys,60 stream morphology surveys,5 miles of stream morphology surveys,1/2 mile of stream restoration.
Collaboration with Sitka Tribe on Ocean Research
Sitka Tribe has established the Southeast Alaska Tribal Ocean Research partnership. This partnership includes 14 communities from Southeast that are interested in Shellfish Monitoring for paralytic shellfish poisoning. Their work is an amazing asset the communities! We detected a bloom of harmful algae in May which included a toxic shellfish event at Gartina Creek and Shaman Point. We spread this information to the community keep everyone safe. To help get out information on a regular basis, we built the “Clam Hub” in partnership with the City. You can find it between the dock and Gus’!
On top of the shellfish monitoring we are partnering with SEATOR to conduct Ocean Acidification Monitoring. This baseline data-set will help us monitor for ocean acidification which is a result of CO2 being absorbed into the ocean. It may affect our shellfish resources.
Hoonah Stewardship Council
The Hoonah Stewardship Council was formed to address environmental issues in our town.
“Using our Hoonah knowledge and leadership together, creating action and sowing sustainable community collaboration to form a legacy of healthy generations.”
The Hoonah Stewardship Council is working an Environmental Strategic Plan to guide HIA Environmental’s priorities. In the future they will be working towards a biomass greenhouse in Hoonah, needs of the Hoonah Native Forest Partnership. To get involved you can contact us!
We have strived for better communication for HIA Environmental. We now have a nearly Monthly Newsletters as well as a newly established active web presence at www.hia-env.org. You can receive updates from this beautifully designed website by signing your email up. You can also keep tabs on recent news (Shellfish monitoring results, student involvement, jobs, and more) at www.facebook.com/hiaenviromental.
MOBY and the Community Garden
MOBY Greenhouse was a student learning project that was coupled with the community garden. It engaged students and helped lead the conversation about a future greenhouse in Hoonah. The “Greenhouse Gala” brought residents together over locally grown food to learn about biomass linked greenhouses and how one can benefit Hoonah.
Ameicorp VISTA Position
We are thrilled to have Sean Williams here to work with the community and students to address concerns around our coastal resources. The overarching goal of Sean’s position is to understand the risks to Port Frederick’s marine and economic resources. From there his project may branch into creating jobs that may help mitigate the impact of those risks, as well as educate our youth on our changing marine systems. Aspects of Sean’s work include reviewing scientific papers, creating public outreach from scientific information, familiarizing himself with Hoonah’s forests and plants. You can expect to hear more from Sean in the near future : he will be working to community needs through surveys and community meetings. He will be taking his newfound knowledge to create a scientific framework in order to create resilient subsistence resource management.
Presentations and Conferences
- HABS Workshop May 2017, Sitka – Re-upped our skills in shellfish monitoring and presented our lessons learned
- ATCEM Conference November 2017, Anchorage – Presented the lessons learned and
- 7-Generations Training May 2017, Anchorage
- Stream Temperature Monitoring Workshop, April 2017, Haines
- Southeast Environmental Conference, September 2017, Wrangell
Looking Forward to 2018
There is a lot going on in 2018! These project titles are only a sample of the work that will be conducted in 2018.
- Compostable Waste Stream Assessment
- Hoonah Home Energy Leadership Program
- Continuing Work with Hoonah Stewardship Council
- Hoonah Native Forest Partnership Watershed Management Plan
- Implementing Projects with the Hoonah Native Forest Partnership
- Vulnerability Assessment of Coastal Resources
- Results of the Biomass Feasibility Study
- Establishing Stream Temperature Monitoring Network
- Stove Replacement/Modification Program
HIA Environmental is operated with funding from the EPA Indian General Assistance program, Natural Resource Conservation Services, and the Sustainable Southeast Partnership. Thank you to all of our partners in the City, School, Forest Service, and the region that take their time and resources to make progress in our thriving community!