– Air Force prepares to dismantle HAARP ahead of summer shutdown (Alaska Dispatch, May 14, 2014):
FAIRBANKS — The U.S. Air Force gave official notice to Congress Wednesday that it intends to dismantle the $300 million High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program in Gakona this summer.
The shutdown of HAARP, a project created by the late Sen. Ted Stevens when he wielded great control over the U.S. defense budget, will start after a final research experiment takes place in mid-June, the Air Force said in a letter to Congress Tuesday.
The University of Alaska has expressed interest in taking over the research site, which is off the Tok Cutoff in an area where black spruce was cleared a quarter-century ago for the Air Force backscatter radar project that was never completed. But the school has not volunteered to pay $5 million a year to run HAARP.
Responding to questions from Sen. Lisa Murkowski during a Senate hearing Wednesday, David Walker, deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force for science, technology and engineering, said this is“not an area that we have any need for in the future” and it would not be a good use of Air Force research funds to keep HAARP going. “We’re moving on to other ways of managing the ionosphere, which the HAARP was really designed to do,” he said. “To inject energy into the ionosphere to be able to actually control it. But that work has been completed.”