Witnessing climate change in Alaska

The radio programmes

The four programmes in the radio series were reviewed and approved by the 12 people interviewed, the Huslia Tribal Council, community members, and the Principal Investigator, Orville Huntington.

The Huslia Tribal Council holds the legal copyright to the four programmes, their transcriptions, and all the original recordings. No copies of the programmes or any original material can be made without written permission of the Huslia Tribal Council.



PROGRAMME 1

LeAnn Bifelt, Radio Producer & Voice Talent
In this programme, Elders Steven and Catherine Attla, and community members Audrey and Fred Bifelt, share their observations on climate change. They talk about changes in the moon, animal behavior, bird populations, condition of fish, and the land. Fred also reflects on the importance of traditional values.

Read programme transcript (PDF)

Student Autobiography: My name is LeAnn Delores Bifelt and I’m 16 years of age. I am currently attending Jimmy Huntington School for my sophomore year. I am interested in basketball, swimming, and baseball. I also enjoy hanging out with my friends, reading, driving around town, drawing, and singing. In my family, I have one sister and three brothers. My older siblings’ names are Leona and Edwin, and my younger siblings are Joseph and Edward. My future goal is to either attend college in Fairbanks, Anchorage, or New York City, where I will pursue a career in photography, art, or music. LeAnn Delores Bifelt.



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Infrared image of the village of Huslia on the Koyukuk River, Alaska.
© .

PROGRAMME 2

Athena Sam, Radio Producer & Voice Talent
In this programme, hunters and fishermen Orville Huntington, Al Yatlin, and Ed Vent share their views on climate change. They talk about their concerns for the abundance and health of fish and wildlife, and changes in the landscape, such as permafrost and trees.

Read programme transcript (PDF)

Student Autobiography: Hello, my name is Athena Angel Sam. I am 15 going on 16 years old. The name of the school that I attend is Jimmy Huntington School. I mostly enjoy playing basketball and baseball. I have six sisters and four brothers in my family. My older sisters and brothers live in another town, or are away at college. I live here in Huslia with my mom, my two younger sisters, my younger brother, and my older brother. My main goal is to finish school with good grades. I don’t really know what I’m going to do after High School. Athena Sam.



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Fish camp on the Koyukuk River near Huslia, Alaska in July 1971.
© .

PROGRAMME 3

Kenny Sam, Radio Producer & Voice Talent
In this programme, long-time residents Wilson Sam, Hudson Sam, and younger relative Darrell Sam explain some of the big changes they have noticed. They talk about warmer year round temperatures, which affect the formation of ice and cause the drying of the lakes. They also recognize that the weather and wildlife have become unpredictable.

Read programme transcript (PDF)

Student Autobiography: My name is Kenny Sam, Jr. and I am a junior attending Jimmy Huntington School. I have seven sisters and three brothers. Three of my sisters and one of my brothers are in college. My other, older brother is working. After High School I plan on either going into the Navy or working somewhere that pays a pretty good amount of money. Kenny Sam, Jr.



Steven Attla’s dog team in Huslia, Alaska in the winter of 1948. / ©: Steve Attla
Steven Attla’s dog team in Huslia, Alaska in the winter of 1948.
© Steve Attla

PROGRAMME 4

Sheila Esmailka, Radio Producer & Voice Talent
In this programme, Elders Tony Sam, Sr. and Butch Yaska, and community member Jack Wholecheese, share their observations about changes in the weather, animals, and fish. They talk about their concerns, including the increase in snow depth, riverbank erosion, and uncertainty about the future.

Read programme transcript (PDF)

Student Autobiography: I’m Sheila Esmailka, a High School senior currently attending Jimmy Huntington School in Huslia, Alaska. As a senior I have many goals for the future. Right now, my main focus is getting into college. I plan on going to UAF for a year or two and then going on to paramedic school. My family is my main support, especially my parents. They have been there for me along the way, and they continue to stand by my side as I go along. My two older brothers have also been a source of strength and guidance throughout my life. Just as my family has done, the community of Huslia has offered unconditional love and support. For such a small village we have an amazingly huge support structure. With everybody behind me I know I can overcome all obstacles on my way to accomplishing all of my goals. Sheila Esmailka.



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Caribou in the Koyukuk River Valley near Huslia, Alaska in May 1949 .
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PROGRAMME THANKS

Ryan Olin, Voice Talent
Each programme ends with a special thanks to all those who helped make the project possible.

Student Autobiography: My name is Ryan J. Olin and I am an 18-year old senior attending Jimmy Huntington School. I have two older brothers. The oldest is Leon Nollner, who is in the Navy. The other brother, Donovan Olin, still lives in Huslia, where I have lived my whole life. I enjoy playing baseball and basketball, and I also play the guitar and sing in a band. I think these skills and interests should lead to some great opportunities. After high school I’d like to enroll in a music school, where I’d also like to take some computer classes. Ryan J. Olin

STUDENT REPORTING:

The students wrote about the project in their Jimmy Huntington School Newsletter called the Husler Highlights. See articles:

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