This announcement updates the travel protocols in Alaska for researchers receiving support through NSF’s research support contractor, Battelle Arctic Research Operators (Battelle ARO).
The Office of Polar Programs (OPP) Arctic Sciences Section is implementing reduced quarantine durations in Alaska (as described below) to mitigate risk while recognizing the removal of state-mandated travel restrictions in Alaska. If any COVID-19 cases are observed with this revised protocol, then OPP will revert to the longer quarantine times that were in use since 2020.
The goals of the Arctic Sciences Section remain to protect the health of program participants and prevent the spread of COVID-19 to the Arctic, particularly to communities and research stations, while assisting researchers in meeting their original project goals to the extent possible given constraints imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Arctic Sciences Section continues to utilize the science-based public health guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and respect local and tribal concerns about researcher travel near communities in the Arctic. See the full announcement at https://www.nsf.gov/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=303144&org=OPP.