Press Releases

Media Requests: Members of the media can contact the press office by emailing or by calling 206-302-8317 and asking for the press office.


Murkowski Urges NOAA to Help Alaska’s Fishermen Deal With Debris

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Hearing tsunami debris concerns rising among Alaska's fishermen, Senator Lisa Murkowski reached out to NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco, pushing for information on the status of ongoing prevention and monitoring efforts. "Alaska is already experiencing higher levels of debris than typical, particularly off Montague and Kayak Islands in the Prince Williams Sound area," Murkowski notified Lubchenco in a letter (attached). "I respectfully request that the National Oceanic and … Continue Reading


Murkowski: Senate Should Swiftly Take Up Svinicki Nomination

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today released the following comment on the White House's nomination of Kristine Svinicki to a second term on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Svinicki's current term expires June 30. "Kristine Svinicki's leadership on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has earned her the admiration of members of Congress from both sides of the political aisle. She's an experienced and fair-minded regulator who deserves to be swiftly reconfirmed to … Continue Reading


Murkowski and Young Salute USCGC Healy Captain and Crew

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski and Representative Don Young today welcomed the Commanding Officer of the United States Coast Guard Cutter Healy to a U.S. Capitol briefing they requested. The officer shared information surrounding the ship's emergency January mission when it cut a path for fuel delivery through miles of sea ice to Nome. Though the presentation's tone was positive, both Murkowski and Young used it as an illustration of the nation's need for a more robust Arctic fleet.… Continue Reading


Murkowski: Student Loan Bill “Solves One Problem by Making Another Worse”

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski today voted against raising taxes on small businesses to pay for maintaining the current student loan interest rate for one year when S.2343, the Student Loan Bill came up for consideration on the Senate floor - while expressing hope that a more responsible solution would be agreed upon in the future. Senator Murkowski had the following statement after her vote: "College graduates in Alaska and across the country today face two obstacles: rising colleg… Continue Reading


Murkowski Announces First Session Summer Interns

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski today announced the names of her first session summer interns who will work in her Washington, D.C., office next month. Just weeks after graduating from high school, these young Alaskans will observe the operations of a fast-paced Senate office and the legislative process from an up-close view. For the 1st session - running June 4-June 29, 2012 - Murkowski selected Arianna Cocallas, Connor Toohey, Michelle Fernandez and Elizabeth Wheatall of Anchorage;… Continue Reading


Murkowski Lauds Potential Alaska Tribal Health, VA Partnership

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Veterans Administration plans to unveil an agreement that could allow rural Alaska veterans to receive healthcare benefits at Native health clinics for the first time. Senator Murkowski had the following response to the announcement: "Coming from rural Alaska didn't keep thousands of Alaskans from serving their country, and Alaska's veteran community should not be kept from the medical care they need because of geography. From my first day in the U.S. Senate, ensuring … Continue Reading


Murkowski Welcomes J-1 Visa Approach

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. State Department today announced changes to the J-1 summer visa program will not prohibit Alaska's seafood processing facilities from utilizing the program until at least November 2012. Senator Murkowski had the following response to the decision: "Alaskans place the highest priority on hiring state residents; that's why our unemployment rate is below the national average. But seafood processors tell me the J-1 visa program allows them to add critical seasonal staff… Continue Reading


Murkowski Comment on TransCanada’s Keystone XL Application

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), today issued the following statement on TransCanada's decision to reapply for a permit to build the Keystone XL pipeline across the U.S.-Canada border: "Allowing the Keystone XL pipeline to bring Canadian oil across our border to our Gulf Coast refineries should be a simple economic decision," Murkowski said. "It will not only enhance our trading relationship with one of our greatest allies, it will also bring badly needed jobs and red… Continue Reading


Murkowski Congratulates Alaska’s Presidential Scholars

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Alaskan high school seniors Brigit M. Noon and Alec P. Pankow were named as U.S. President Scholars today by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Senator Murkowski had the following response to the news: "Now more than ever, high school students have competing priorities, pressures and interests - not to mention added distractions their parents didn't have. That's why we should especially congratulate Brigit and Alec today as being among only 141 students across the nation … Continue Reading


Murkowski Fights For Alaska Basics in Appropriations Committee

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Senator Lisa Murkowski successfully secured provisions in the FY2013 Agriculture Appropriations bill that would provide Alaskans relief against energy prices among the highest in the nation, and make crucial progress in giving rural Alaskans basic water and sanitation needs. Murkowski also sought answers about the nutrition needs of military kids nationwide. "I'm pleased my colleagues agreed to provide the bare essentials of water to drink and warmth during Alaska's winters,… Continue Reading


NMFS Permits Move Shell Closer to Arctic Exploration

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today issued the following statement on the National Marine Fisheries Service's (NMFS) approval of Incidental Harassment Authorization permits for Shell Oil's planned exploration this summer in Alaska's Beaufort and Chukchi seas. "The permits issued today bring Shell closer to drilling for oil and natural gas in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas," Murkowski said. "If all goes as expected, Shell could very well make significant discoveries this … Continue Reading


Video of Sen. Murkowski Discussing Potential for Alaska Natural Gas Exports to Japan

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, has been meeting this week with Japanese officials promoting the possibility of exporting natural gas from Alaska's North Slope to meet Japan's energy needs. (Click on photo to play video) Murkowski has said there's a window of opportunity for Alaska to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the North Slope to Japan to replace nuclear power generation taken off line following last year's 9.0-magnitude earthquake, tsunami and emergenc… Continue Reading


Murkowski: NOAA a "Fish Out of Water" at Commerce Department

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In an op-ed published in Alaskan media outlets statewide today, Senator Lisa Murkowski discussed the growing movement in Washington, DC regarding President Obama's proposal to move the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) from the jurisdiction of the Commerce Department to the Department of Interior. Murkowski evaluates the idea and tells Alaskans "it makes sense on a number of levels." President Obama spoke of the possible move in January, and since … Continue Reading


Murkowski Comments on Success of Methane Hydrate Test

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today commented on the successful completion of a joint U.S. Department of Energy and Japan field test of technology capable of extracting natural gas from methane hydrates locked in the ice of Alaska's North Slope. "The success of this test is wonderful news for Alaska and America," Murkowski said. "The test not only demonstrated that we have the ability to release methane hydrates from their frozen state, but also that the same process c… Continue Reading


Murkowski: Alaska’s Natural Gas a Good Fit for Japan

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, yesterday continued her efforts to develop new markets for Alaska's 35 trillion cubic feet of natural gas on the North Slope by raising the potential of providing a long-term, stable supply of energy to Japan with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda at a dinner hosted by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Only two of Japan's 53 nuclear reactors remain in operation after last year's 9.0-magnitude earthquake, tsunami and emergency a… Continue Reading


Murkowski Protects Village Safe Water Program in Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Lisa Murkowski reached an agreement with Senate Agriculture Committee leadership to continue authorization for Alaska's Village Safe Water (VSW) projects in the 2012 Farm Bill - providing basic drinking water and sanitation needs to rural areas in the state. "Yesterday we passed the 21st Century Postal Service Act, but many regions of Alaska are still trying to reach 20th Century standards in 2012 when it comes to basic water needs," said Murkowski. "As we move forwar… Continue Reading


Murkowski Votes to Protect Women From Violence

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Murkowski today cast a vote for the Violence Against Women Act reauthorization bill she co-sponsored that would continue to support efforts and programs nationwide to combat and police domestic violence, as well as providing services and care for victims. The bill passed the U.S. Senate 68-31. In a dramatic speech prior to the vote, Senator Murkowski spoke of the human toll in Alaska, where domestic violence and sexual assaults are the highest in the nation. "This e… Continue Reading


Leadership of Senate Oceans Subcommittee and Oceans Caucus

Washington. D.C. - Senators Mark Begich of Alaska and Olympia Snowe of Maine, who lead the Senate Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries and Coast Guard, were joined by the leaders of the Senate Oceans Caucus, Senators Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, as well as Senate President Pro Tempore Daniel K. Inouye of Hawaii, in introducing a bill to improve the nation's ocean survey workforce. The bill reauthorizes the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrat… Continue Reading


Murkowski Comments on Nomination of Marcilynn Burke

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today voted against forwarding to the Senate floor the nomination of Marcilynn Burke to be the Department of the Interior's Assistant Secretary for Lands and Minerals. Burke currently serves in that position in an acting capacity. "I have concerns about Ms. Burke's nomination from a number of standpoints, including her role in the proposed OSM-BLM consolidation and her involvement in litigation interfering in the wildlife management decisi… Continue Reading


Murkowski’s Opening Statement on Electric Grid Reliability

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today made the following opening statement at the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Hearing on electric reliability and the New England power outages last fall: Click on photo to play video "Good morning and thank you all for being here. Today we're scheduled to hear testimony on grid reliability in light of the power outages experienced by New England last October after an historic Nor'easter. "Coming from Alaska, I can certainly ap… Continue Reading

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