Coast Guard Monitoring Kivalina Fuel Storage Facilities

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The Coast Guard is monitoring fuel storage tanks in Kivalina that may become damaged due to heavy rain, 35-knot winds and 9-foot seas eroding soil on the nearby ocean coast.

Presently, the fuel tanks are approximately 30 feet from the shore containing about 240,000 gallons of diesel fuel and gasoline. Residents are using sandbags to reinforce the sea wall.

Coast Guard Sector Anchorage is preparing a response to prevent an oil spill should it become necessary. Some response equipment is pre-staged by the storage facility, Alaska Village Electrical Cooperative (AVEC).

Other residents have evacuated to Red Dog Mine about 16 miles away. Fewer than 400 people reside in Kivalina. Kivalina is located on the tip of an eight-mile barrier reef located between the Chukchi Sea and Kivalina River.

According to village elders, approximately 50 years ago the ocean coast was 1.5 miles from Kivalina.

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