Alaska’s Renewable Energy Projects 

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Biomass

Existing Projects

  • Craig – In 2008, the City of Craig, with a population of 1,201, installed a sawmill waste-fired boiler to heat the city pool and school. The boiler will save the city an estimated $120,000 per year annually and displace about 19,000 gallons of oil and 33,000 gallons of propane. In 2011, the City of Craig planned to purchase an additional biomass fuel dryer with a capacity of approximately 13,000 of wood water per year produced as a byproduct of the sawmilling process. Dried wood would then be burned in publicly owned facilities to provide reduced-cost, district-style heat at a reduced cost to the public entities that operate these facilities.
  • Delta Junction-In 2012, Delta/Greely School District constructed a Wood Chip Boiler Heating System to heat 44,000 sq. ft. school in the sub-arctic.
  • Dot Lake – Dot Lake incorporated a cordwood community-heating project to reduce heating fuel costs.
  • Haines (Chilkoot) Central Wood Heating System Construction: The Chilkoot Indian Association is constructing a four-plex low-income housing facility that will incorporate a cordwood-fired boiler
  • Lake and Peninsula Wood Boilers- The Lake and Peninsula Borough have installed high efficiency low emissions wood boilers to provide heat to two buildings: the Kokhanok Village Council Building and the Community Building.
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  • Tanana – In November 2007, Tanana Power Company Inc. finished installing two 1850-gallon hot water boilers, each capable of producing 425,000 Btu/hr, to heat a watershed. The simple payback on the initial system cost of $170,000 will be approximately 6.5 years assuming diesel is at $2 per gallon. Currently, this project displaces approximately 9,000 gallons of diesel every year.
  • Tok- The Tok School Biomass Heating Project is an automated wood chip heating system that heats a 75,000 sq. ft. school and approximately 5,000 sq. ft. outbuildings. The system displaced 64,000 gallons of heating fuel saving at least $126,562 per year for this complex in 2008. The project is currently complete and operational.

Project Under Construction

  • Fairbanks — In December 2011, Fairbanks biomass generators will be the newest source of power for Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA). This project will provide an estimated 300-kilowatt hours of electricity to GVEA, boosting up to 500 kilowatt hours after the kinks are ironed out. GVEA’s total customers use about 200 megawatts of power per hour during the winter.
  • Fort Yukon- This project, coordinated by Gwitchyaa Zhee Utility Company, construct a chip-fired biomass heating system to replace the GZ diesel power plant. Gwitchyaa Zhee began work in 2008. Once completed, the project is expected to displace 136,000 gallons of diesel every year.
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  • North Pole – In 2009, Chena Power began construction on a 400 kW power generating demonstration plant that will burn 4,300 tons of waste paper and other biomass annually, generating 500kW of power for the Golden Valley Electric Association.
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  • Susitna Valley High School- In 2014, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough will finish constructing a wood-fired heating system for the Susitna Valley High School. The system will include an Energy Building to houses the boilers, the on-site storage of the wood fuel, the connection piping to the building and the regulating mechanisms.
  • Tanana- In 2010, the City of Tanana in collaboration with the Tanana Tribal Council applied for a Round III grant from the Renewable Energy Fund to install a biomass heating facility for an Assisted Living Facility, the Tanana Tribal Offices and the Internet High Tech training Center. Since the application was submitted in 2009, the City of Tanana has also been awarded $1,540,000 from the US Department of Energy (DOE) to conduct energy efficiency activities in the community and to design and construct biomass heating systems for the school, tribal complex, water/sewer system, fire hall, and city offices.
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  • Tanacross- In 2012, the Native Village of Tanacross began final designs and construction of a single centrally located woody biomass plant to heat four community facilities. The project is estimated to displace 26,500 gallons of imported heating oil and create local wood-harvesting jobs and catalyze small businesses.
  • Thorne Bay School- In 2009, the Southeast Island School District received a grant to fund the final design and construction of a wood fired boiler system for the local school. Wood would be supplied by local sawmills, USFS small sales, wood left behind on the landings from large timber sales and from small local firewood cutters.
  • Upper Kobuk River Biomass- The City of Kobuk began final design and construction for a wood burning boiler system in 2012 to meet the city’s internal heating needs.

Geothermal

Existing Projects

  • Chena Hot Springs Resort -The resort expanded its 400 kW of binary cycle generators, installed in 2006, to 680 kW in 2008. Produced by United Technologies Corporation (UTC) with assistance from state and federal agencies, the generators run on 165°F water, the lowest temperature energy source for an operating geothermal power plant in the world. At 400 kW, the original $2.1 million project displaces 150,000 gallons of diesel annually and saves over $450,000 a year based on $3.00/gallon fuel prices. In addition to the electric power plant, the Chena Resort uses its geothermal resources for outdoor baths, district heating, swimming pool heating, and to provide heat and carbon dioxide to its greenhouses. The site also uses geothermal energy for refrigeration, having installed a 16-ton absorption chiller in 2005 to provide maintain an outdoor ice museum that is kept frozen year-round. The chiller uses water from a 165°F well as a heat source and a 40°F creek as a heat sink. Chena continues to research and explore the powerful geothermal resource under the resort.
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  • Juneau Airport Ground Source Heat Pump- The use of geothermal energy at the Juneau International Airport Terminal is part of an overall renovation and expansion project. Based on the feasibility study conducted by the Alaska Energy Engineering LLC, a Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP) scheme offers a financial incentive to move away from traditional fuel oil-based heating systems to one that extracts heat from the ground and obtains most of its purchased energy from cleaner hydroelectric sources. Implementing this new system is projected to save $114,985 in fuel oil along with $10,000 a year in staff labor and $1,000 in snow removal equipment.
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  • Juneau Ground Source Heat Pump (Dimond Aquatic Center)- The City & Borough of Juneau designed and constructed a hybrid ground source heat pump system to serve the heating needs at the Dimond Park Aquatic Center. The Center is a new competition, recreation, and education swimming facility completed in 2011. The system consists of a ground source heat pump that will meet 81% of the facility’s heating needs and a supplemental electric heat system to make up the difference during periods when the facility’s heat loads exceed the capacity of the ground source heat pumps. The facility produces approximately 4.1 billion BTUS that displace 63,200 gallons of diesel annually.
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  • Manley Hot Springs – Manley, on the Tanana River, has the potential to meet 100% of the power and heating needs of the surrounding community. Dart-AM Farms, LLC is currently using direct heat from this geothermal source to heat two greenhouses and soil in a nearby field. In 2011, the project aimed to install a water-pumping windmill that would create a combined heat and power system.
  • McGrath- In 2013, McGrath Light & Power installed a heat recovery system to provide available heat from the existing McGrath Light & Power Company (ML&P) Power Plant to the Iditarod Area School District, the clinic, and three adjacent commercial buildings. The project uses available jacket water and exhaust heat (waste heat recovery) that was previously absorbed by the atmosphere via radiators.
  • North Pole-In 2010, Golden Valley Electric Association completed construction of a waste heat recovery system that would replace 15 existing electric unit heaters and produce ½ MW of power. Electric power conservation and fuel savings would benefit all of GVEA’s 33,000 members from Cantwell to Delta Junction.
  • Alaska Sea Life Center Heat Pump Project- In 2010, the 120,000 square foot Alaska SeaLife Center received grant funds from the Denali Commission and Alaska Energy Authority to design and install two 90 ton heat pumps that utilize sea water from ice free Resurrection Bay to provide heat for indoor spaces, outdoor sidewalks, and domestic hot water. In December 2012, the two existing oil boilers were turned off and the sea water heat pump system performance was monitored continuously through December 2013. Throughout 2013, the heat pump system displaced 48,104 gallons of heating oil, producing a net savings of $120,000 and a net CO2 emission reduction of 420,000 lbs. The average system COP (coefficient of performance) for the year was 2.77; this represents an efficiency of 277% over heating oil or straight electric heat. In 2014, AEA provided an Emerging Energy Technology grant to design and install additional heat pumps that utilize CO2 as refrigerant and lift from sea water temperatures (40 degrees F) up to 194 degrees F for baseboard heat in the offices and labs.

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Projects Under Construction

  • Akutan – In 2010, The City of Akutan on the Aleutian Chain drilled two exploration wells in Hot Springs Valley to assess the feasibility of a geothermal energy source there. The prospective project would provide heat for Akutan’s 1027 residents and a local fish processing plant. The first well produced water in excess of 360 degrees Fahrenheit. The project received additional funding in 2013 to move into the final design and permitting phase.
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  • Ambler- In 2009, The City of Ambler received grant funds to construct buried piping, pumps, heat exchangers, and other system components required to recover waste heat from the existing Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC) power plant and confer this energy to the new City water plant and washeteria.
  • Atka- The City of Atka received a grant in 2010 to complete permitting and final design of heat recovery project. The proposed project would use excess hydropower to heat the city, its school buildings, and a nearby fish processing facility.
  • Cordova- The Cordova Electric Cooperative received a grant in 2008 to capture waste heat by installing an Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) heat recovery unit on a new high-efficiency, low-emissions diesel generator. This heat recovery project would increase the diesel generator’s electrical production by an additional 4-6%.
  • Hoonah- Inside Passage Electric Cooperative will construct a heat recovery project in the community of Hoonah beginning in 2011. The Project will recover available jacket water heat from IPEC-Hoonah diesel generator that is currently being rejected to the atmosphere via radiators. It would additionally reduce diesel heating fuel consumption of nearby community buildings by over 55,000-gallons/year. The affected building would be the local school, pool, gymnasium, police station, and fire hall.
  • Japonski Island Boathouse Heat Pump- The City and Borough of Sitka began designing and constructing a hybrid ground source heat pump (GSHP) to serve the heating needs at the Japonski Island Boathouse Historical Rehabilitation Project in 2011.The Japonski Island Boathouse Heat Pump hybrid system will meet approximately 81% of the facility’s heating needs, with a supplemental electric heat system to make up the difference during periods when the facility’s heat loads exceed the capacity of the ground source heat pumps.
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  • Kotzebue- In 2009, the Kotzebue Electric Association received grant funds to purchase and install equipment to recover unutilized heat from the diesel generator exhaust stacks for an expanded district heating system and a new absorption chiller to make ice for the fishing fleet in Kotzebue.
  • Organic Rankine Cycle Field-In 2011, Alaska Center for Energy and Power began installation and field testing for a 50 kW pre-commercial ORC unit to understand the efficacy of generating power using recovered waste heat from a mid-sized rural power plant. The first phase of this project (funded through the Denali Commission and AEA) performed laboratory testing of the 50 kW unit. The field testing will include performance data collection and analysis, evaluation of operation and maintenance requirements, economic analysis of potential power generation and cost savings, and will set guidelines for future ORC applications throughout rural Alaska.
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  • Point Lay- The North Slope Borough will use grant funds awarded in 2009 to construct a waste heat system to deliver recovered heat from the existing diesel powerhouse to several public buildings in the community of Point Lay. Completion of the project is expected for March 2013.
  • Russian Mission- In 2012, the City of Russian Mission received funds for the final design and construction of a heat recovery system that will utilize waste heat from the existing Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC) power plant. The salvaged power will then be redirect to for the WTP and three LYSD teacher housing units in Russian Mission. The construction will include retrofitting the AVEC generators and installing a waste heat transmission line, circulation pumps, heat exchangers, and other system appurtenances.
  • Saint Paul- Beginning in 2012, the City of St. Paul will be designing and upgrading a heat recovery loop to work in conjunction with their new wind/diesel system.
  • Shishmaref Heat Recovery Project-In 2012, the City of Shishmaref received funds to design and construct a heat recovery system between the Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC) power plant and the end-user community building, including the local water treatment plant, clinic and city office. The new system will capture jacket water heat generated by the AVEC plant that is currently released into the atmosphere by power plant radiators. This project will displace approximately 7,900 gallons of diesel per year.
  • Sleetmute- In 2012, the Sleetmute Traditional Council received funding for the final design and construction of a recovery system that will utilize the heat from the engines at the Middle Kuskokwim Electric Plant and redirect to a nearby water treatment plant. The project will displace approximately 1,779 gallons of diesel per year according to a 2010 Heat Recovery Analysis.
  • Tatitlek- In 2012, Tatitlek Village IRA Council received a grant to construct a heat recovery system that will redirect escaped energy from a local power plant to the Community Center, which houses the Village IRA Council administrative offices. The generating station and administration building were designed to accommodate to a heat recovery application when the power plant was refurbished in 2006, and the only phases remaining for this project are design update and construction. The project is estimated to displace 6,000 gallons of fuel oil.
  • Togiak- The City of Togiak, in collaboration with ANTHC, will construct a heat recovery system to connect waste heat from AVEC’s generating station to the water treatment plant, clinic, police station, City Office and the “Old School” Community Activity Building. The project will displace approximately 13,700 gallons of diesel per year.
  • Unalaska- The City of Unalaska will use grant funds for the purchase and installation of equipment that will utilize the excess heat from existing generators at the Dutch Harbor powerhouse. The 200 kW organic Rankine Cycle generator is designed to convert waste heat into electrical energy. The waste heat recovery system will be designed for expansion to include excess heat from increased power demands when a new powerhouse is constructed.

Hydro

Alaska currently generates about 21% of its electricity from hydropower, much of it from projects in the Southeast Alaska. Power generation numbers listed assume a 50% capacity factor.

Completed Projects

  • Allison Lake Hydro: Located in Valdez andcoordinated by theCooper Valley Electric Association, Allison Lake hydro project is set to provide approximately 35 % of Copper Valley Electric Association’s (CVEA) generation needs. When Allison Lake is added to the existing hydropower generated at Solomon Gulch, only 5% of CVEA power will be generated from fossil fuels. This additional production of 3250 kW displaces approximately 4 million gallons of fuel per year, which translates into a $9,885,000 saving each year. Construction began on the project in 2013.
  • Annex Creek – This 3.6 MW project, operated by Alaska Electric Light and Power, was originally developed in 1915 by the Gastineau Alaska Engineers. It was automated in 1977 and currently meets about 10% of Juneau’s 31,275 residents’ electrical needs.
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  • Beaver Falls – This 5.4 MW facility is owned and operated by Ketchikan Public Utilities and provides power to the City of Ketchikan and its 8,050 residents. It consists of three separate generators built between 1947 and 1954.
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  • Black Bear Lake – The Black Bear Lake Hydro project is a 4.5 MW hydroelectric project at Black Bear Lake on Prince of Wales Island, approximately 15 miles NE of Klawock. It supplies power to the communities of Prince of Wales Island, whose population stands at 5,559. It was the first hydro project in Alaska to be certified as low-impact by the Low Impact Hydropower Institute. Black Bear Lake was completed in 1995 and cost $10 million to permit and construct.
  • Blind Slough – Blind Slough is a 2 MW project that supplied the City of Petersburg (population of 2,948) with electrical power since the 1920s. The project is located on Crystal Lake on Mitkof Island approximately 16.5 miles south of the Petersburg. Water used for generation is either used directly by the Crystal Lake Fish Hatchery or is returned to Crystal Creek, which eventually enters Blind Slough. It supplies about 20% of Petersburg Municipal Light and Power’s electricity.
  • Blue Lake – The City of Sitka owns and operates this 6 MW project on Sawmill Creek that went into operation in 1961. It currently provides about 20% of electrical demand to the Sitka’s population of 8,881 and displaces nearly 2.3 million gallons of diesel every year. In 2013, Sitka received an additional $4 million to increase the dam’s height and add a third powerhouse, which would increase generating capacity up to 18 MW.
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  • Bradley Lake – Bradley Lake features a 126 MW hydroelectric project located in Homer that serves the Railbelt Region. The project went into commercial operation in 1991. Operated by the Homer Electric Association, the project is an impoundment hydroelectric facility with a 125-foot high dam and a 3.5 mile power tunnel. It cost over $300 million to construct.
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  • Chester Lake – This 1 MW project is owned by Metlakatla Power and Light and provides electricity to the Southeast village of Metlakatla and its 1,405 residents.
  • Chuniisax Creek – With a population of 61 residents, Atka has a PCE rate of 45.32 cent per kWh and an average residential rate of 66 cents per kWh. In response to these high-energy costs, the city constructed a hydroelectric project on the Chuniisax Creek, approximately 0.75 miles northwest of Atka. The project includes a 13-ft reinforced concrete buttress dam, a 1000-ft HDPE, 50-ft of steel penstock, and a powerhouse containing an Ossberger cross flow turbine and generator with a nameplate capacity of 284 kilowatts (kW). The Chuniisax Creek Hydroelectric Project can meet all of Atka’s electrical needs.
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  • Cooper Lake- Chugach Electric Association owns and operates this 19.4 MW facility on Cooper Lake, Cooper Creek and Kenai Lake on the Kenai Peninsula. It began operation in 1960 and was relicensed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in 2007.
  • Delta Creek – This 800 kW project meets all of King Cove’s 938 residents’ electrical needs and lowers the cost of electricity to $0.11/ kWh (non-PCE rate of $.26/kWh). King Cove, incidentally, has the lowest, single-site cost of power among all 160 communities in the State of Alaska’s Power Cost Equalization program.
  • Dewey Lakes – The 943 kW run-of-the-river Dewey Lakes Hydro Project is located adjacent to Skagway. The city’s 920 residents currently pay $0.69 /kWh under PCE and $0.22 non-PCE. This project was built in the early 1900′s and has been operated by Alaska Power & Telephone since 1957.
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  • Eklutna – The Elkutna hydroelectric facility, brought online by the federal government in 1955, has a 30 MW generation capacity. It is currently operated by Anchorage Municipal Light & Power and is the cheapest energy source connected to the Railbelt energy grid.
  • Falls Creek – This project built by Gustavus Electric Company was completed in July 2009. The city has a PCE rate of $.015 / kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $ 0.41/kWh. The project now provides 442 residents with 400 kW of power, meeting close to 90% of the community’s electrical needs, while displacing 140,00 gallons of diesel every year.
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  • Goat Lake – The Goat Lake hydroelectric facility is a storage project with a 4 MW capacity that has been in operation since 1997. The Lake is a dam-less reservoir certified as a Low Impact Hydropower project by the Low Impact Hydropower Institute in 2007. Alaska Power & Telephone operates the Goat Lake facility, which provides power to Skagway and Haines.
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  • Gold Creek – Gold Creek Hydropower project, currently operated by Alaska Electric Light and Power, is a 1.6 MW run-of-the-river project originally constructed in 1914 with 800 kW generating capacity. An additional 800 kW of generating capacity was incorporated in the 1950′s. This project, located in downtown Juneau (population of 31,275), produces power seasonally with peak production around May.
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  • Green Lake – This 18.6 MW hydroelectric facility is owned and operated by the City and Borough of Sitka (population of 8,881) and provides the majority of the region’s electrical power. It began operation in 1979.
  • Humpback Creek – This is a 4 million kWH run-of-the-river project located 7 miles north of the Cordova that meets 16% of the region’s power demand. It is owned and operated by Cordova Electric Cooperative and was commissioned in 2010. Currently, the project displaces approximately 350,000 gallons of diesel every year. Cordova’s 2239 residents have a PCE rate of $0.16/ kWh and an average residential rate of $0.41/kWh.
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  • Kasidaya Creek – This project between Haines and Skagway was constructed by Alaska Power & Telephone Company in 2008 and generates between 300 Kw and 3 MW depending on the season.
  • Ketchikan Lakes – This 4.2 MW project consists of 3 generators finished in 1957. It is owned and operated by Ketchikan Public Utilities and provides power to Ketchikan’s 8,050 residents.
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  • Lake Dorothy - This 14.3 MW project, located near the Snettisham hydroelectric facilities in Juneau), increased the power supply to Juneau by 20% when it went online in 2009. The hydro project also provides power to Princess Cruise Lines and Greens Creek Mining Company.
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  • Larsen Bay – This 475 kW project provides electricity and city water for Larsen Bay’s 87 residents and a fish processing plant on Kodiak Island. Larsen Bay Utility Company operates the project. Larsen Bay has a PCE rate of $.16/ kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0 .41. It went into commercial operation in 1991 and was upgraded in January 2009.
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  • Pelican – This 700 kW hydroelectric facility almost entirely meets the electrical needs of the Southeast town of Pelican. Pelican’s 88 residents have a PCE rate of $0.27/ kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.64/ kWh. The facility began operating in 1988 and was awarded a $1,896,836 grant for upgrades 2011.
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  • Petersburg – This 2 MW project, constructed in 2009, is owned by Petersburg Municipal Light and Power and provides electricity to the town of Petersburg in Southeast Alaska (population of 2,948).
  • Power Creek – The Power Creek hydroelectric plant is located 7 miles east of Cordova and has a total installed generating capacity of 6 MW. It is owned by the Cordova Electric Cooperative and provides about 50% of electrical power to the town of Cordova and surrounding areas. It was commissioned in 1997. Cordova’s 2,239 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.16/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.41/kWh.
  • Purple Lake – This 3.9 MW project is owned by Metlakatla Light and Power and provides electricity to the city of Metlakatla and its 1,405 residents.
  • Salmon Creek – The current 6.7 MW impoundment project at Salmon Creek was built in 1984 and is operated by Alaska Electric Light & Power. The lower powerhouse provides over 10% of the electric energy demand to Juneau (population of 31,275), and its surrounding communities. A power facility has existed at the site since 1913, with significant upgrades and repairs in 1935 and 1967. The upper powerhouse, rebuilt in 1935 after the original was destroyed by fire, was taken out of commission in 1998.
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  • Silvis Lake – The Silvis Lake Power Plant is a 2.1 MW project built in 1968 by Ketchikan Public Utilities to provide power to the City of Ketchikan and its 8,050 residents.
  • Snettisham – This 78 MW hydroelectric facility is the largest in Southeast Alaska, providing 80% of the power used by Juneau (population of 31,275) and Douglas. It was built by the US Corps of Engineers in 1979 and sold to the State of Alaska in 1998. It is currently operated by Alaska Electric Light and Power under a contract with the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority. A 44-mile transmission line runs between the dams and Juneau.
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  • Solomon Gulch – The Solomon Gulch Hydroelectric Project is a 12 MW facility serving Valdez (population of 3,976) and Glennallen (population of 483). The Project began commercial operation on July 1, 1982. It is owned by The Four Dam Pool Power Agency and maintained by the Copper Valley Electric Association (CVEA).
  • South Fork Black Bear – This 2 MW run-of-the-river hydroelectric project was constructed in 2004-2005 to supplement the 4.5 MW Black Bear Lake project, providing a back-up supply of electricity for Prince of Wales Island’s 5,559 residents. The project was completed by Alaska Power & Telephone, with grant assistance from the Denali Commission and the Alaska Energy Authority.
  • Swan Lake – This 22.4 MW remote facility is connected to the Ketchikan Public Utilities system via a 30-mile transmission line. It is operated by Four Dam Pool, a consortium of public and private hydroelectric producers. Swan Lake sells electricity to the City of Ketchikan and it’s 8,050 residents. It came online in 1983 and currently operates at near-full capacity.
  • Tazimina – The project, owned by Iliamna-Newhalen-Nondalton Electric Cooperative (INNEC), who serve 463 residents in the vicinity. The project has an installed capacity of 824 kW and is expandable to 1.5 MW. It is a run-of-the-river project that came online in 1998 on the Tazimina River about 12 miles northeast of Iliamna Lake. In 2013, it received additional funding to increase its capacity.
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  • Terror Lake – Terror Lake is located approximately 25 miles SW of Kodiak City (population of 6,130) and is accessible by float plane and boat only. Since January of 1985, the project has produced up to 20 MW for Kodiak City and the surrounding areas. It is owned by the Four Dam Pool Power Agency. Terror Lake has begun construction on a third hydroelectric turbine generator unit that will produce an additional 11.25 MW in 2014.
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  • Town Creek: The City of Akutan repaired and upgraded the 125 kW Town Creek hydroelectric project. Akutan’s 1,027 residents have a PCE rate of $0.17 / kWh and Average Residential Rate of $0.32/ kWh. The project can generate 775 MWh/yr and displace approximately 39,000 gallons of diesel fuel annually.
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  • Tyee – The Tyee Lake hydroelectric project is located in Southeast Alaska, approximately 40 miles southeast of Wrangell (population of 2,369). It generates up to 20 MW of electricity for Wrangell and Petersburg and is owned by the Four Dam Pool Power Agency.
  • Waterfall Creek Hydroelectric Project: Waterfall Creek is located approximately 5 miles north of the City of King Cove and is within half a mile of the existing Delta Creek Hydroelectric project. The 500 kW project helps meet King Cove’s 938 residents’ electrical needs and lowers the cost of electricity to $0.11/ kWh (non-PCE rate of $.26/kWh). Additionally, the project displaces 75,000 gallons of diesel every year. Because of its close proximity to Delta Creek, upgrades to the facility will also add to the existing Delta Creek powerhouse’s electrical production. These retrofits to raise capacity to 375 kW began in 2013.

Under construction

  • Reynolds Creek – This 5 MW project will be overseen by Haida Power Inc. and the Southeast Conference and will consist of construction a hydroelectric facility on Reynolds Creek on Prince of Wales Island. Along with the hydro facility, a 10.5-mile transmission line will also need to be constructed in order to connect into the existing grid on Prince of Wales Island. Construction began in 2011.
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  • Thayer Lake- The project is a run-of-river hydropower project on Thayer Creek approximately 6 miles north of Angoon. The project has a nameplate capacity of over 1 MW and will be located 6 miles east of Angoon. Features include a 64 square mile reservoir, a head of 250-ft, and the addition of 6.7 miles of transmission lines. The project, coordinated by the Tlingit-Haida Regional Energy Authority, could produce up to 8500MW-hr/yr and meet the community entire electrical demand. Angoon’s 459 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.38/kWh and an Average Residential rate of $0.60. Construction began in 2013.
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  • Whitman Lake – The proposed Whitman Lake Hydroelectric Project is located approximately four miles east of Ketchikan (population 8,050). KPU proposes to install 4.6 MW of hydropower generating capacity at the existing Whitman Lake Dam to provide an additional source of clean renewable energy to the city of Ketchikan and Saxman Village. The project is set to displace 1.1 million gallons of diesel every year. Construction bids were opened in August 2012.
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Ocean (Tidal/Wave)

Wave generation technology is relatively new, with the first utility scale project, the Aguçadora Wave Farm in Portugal, coming online in September 2008. Alaska does have potential to become a leader in wave-generation technology, with half of the wave energy potential in the United States.

Projects Under Construction

  • Cook Inlet- Ocean Renewable Power Company Alaska 2, LLC, will install an array of four 150kW TidGen Power Systems with a total rated capacity of 600 kW near (within 3km) of East Foreland, Alaska. The devices will be installed in water depths of 60-190 ft. at MLLW. Models have predicted peak velocities nearing 5 m/s (~9 knots).

Solar

There are no utility-scale solar power plants in Alaska. Most solar photovoltaic development is in remote areas with stand-alone grids where the cost of alternative electrical generation is extremely high. Utility-scale solar power plants are uneconomical in Alaska with today’s technology, but numerous small residential and commercial systems exist throughout the state.

Existing Projects

  • McKinley Village- Golden Valley Electric Association constructed a solar hot water system for the Denali Education Center consisting of 36 Heliodyne flat panel solar collectors mounted on a 50′X30′ array. The heated domestic water is then distributed through a 2,000-foot insulated pipe system circulating in a loop between the laundry building at the south side of the campus, 13 guest cabins, the Riverside complex on the north side, and to the Sheldon Visitors Center to the west by circulating pumps. System came online in August of 2009 and produce anywhere between 32,000-36,000 kWh of energy.
  • Nome – Bering Straits Native Corporation installed a 16.8 kW solar PV array on their office building in 2008. The PV array produces about 16,000 kWh of electricity per year, offsetting about 1,000 gallons of diesel fuel annually. BSNC has also installed solar hot water heaters on two corporation-owned apartment buildings.
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  • Lime Village – This 12 kW solar array is currently not operational as of December 2011. It was constructed to offset average electrical prices of $1.26 in the remote town of Lime Village. It is a combination solar-diesel generation system with 77 kW of diesel generation capacity. When in operation, Lime Village has displaced 660 gallons of diesel every year. An additional feasibility study for retrofitting began in 2011 to repair the inoperable charger-inverter and control system.

Wind

Existing Systems

  • Chevak – In summer 2008, Alaska Village Electric Cooperative installed four 100 kW wind turbines in this class 6 wind resource location, providing an additional source of energy for the city’s 938 residents. Currently, the city has a PCE rate of $0.28 /kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.48/kWh Since then, AVEC has also begun designing and constructing a secondary load to capture excess energy that will then provide heat for a water treatment plant and water storage tank.
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  • Delta Junction – The 100-kW wind turbine was installed by Alaska Environmental Power and came online in October 2008 as the first of Golden Valley Electric Association’s Renewable Resource Purchase Program installations. Units of this size can connect to the distribution system instead of a transmission system. In 2009, Alaska Environmental Power added a 900-kW turbine for a total of 1 MW and in 2010 announced plans to try to expand to 25 MW by installing 16 GE wind turbines. The turbines are located on a 320-acre site at Mile 1418 of the Alaska Highway, about three miles southeast of Delta Junction (population of 958).
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  • Emmonak/Alakanuk- The Alaska Village Electric Cooperative began construction on sites in Emmonak and Alakanuk in 2011. To date, AVEC has erected and interconnected four turbines. The site is currently operational, running at a ’16+ percent capacity factor for 2012 and displacing 6,465 gallons of diesel every year.
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  • Fire Island – In late September 2012, the Fire Island Wind project was officially in commission. Built by Cook Inlet Region Inc (CIRI), this 11-turbine project has a 17.6-megawatt generation capacity and is expected to sell more than 50,000 MW-hours to Chugach Electric Association annually. The project will supply four percent of Chugach’s energy needs (enough to power about 4,000 Southcentral homes) and offset up to .5 billion cubic feet (bcf) of natural gas consumption in Southcentral Alaska each year. Fire Island Wind, LLC will build additional project phases if additional buyers agree to purchase wind power. The full project is permitted to include up to 33 turbines with 52.8 MW total generation capacity
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  • Gambell - Alaska Village Electric Cooperative has installed three 100-kW wind turbines in Gambell. The city’s 681 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.30/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $.50/kWh. AVEC received additional funding to design and construct a secondary load to capture excess energy and provide heat for a water treatment plant and a drinking water storage tank.
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  • Hooper Bay – Hooper Bay has three Northwind turbines that were installed in 2009 by the Alaska Village Electric Cooperative. The wind project produces approximately 66 kW of power and displaces 15,995 gallons of diesel every year. The city’s 1,093 residents currently have a PCE rate of $.030/ kWh and an average residential rate of $0.50/ kWh.
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  • Kasigluk – Kasigluk installed three Northwind 100-kW turbines in 2006 with a total generating capacity of 300 kW. Wind accounts for roughly 21 percent of total electrical generation. Total wind/diesel generating capacity is 1,624kW and the wind project displaces approximately 52,000 gallons of diesel. Power is provided to the community of Nunapitchuk through a distribution intertie. Nunapitchuk’s 496 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.31/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.51/kWh.
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  • Kodiak – The Kodiak Electrical Association installed three 1.5 MW turbines at Pillar Mountain in July 2009 at a cost of about $21.4 million. The installation, coupled with a hydro facility, at times allow the utility to provide 100 percent renewable power to Kodiak’s 6,130 residents. In its first year, the turbines allowed the utility to cut diesel fuel use by 930,000 gallons, a savings of $2.3 million based on a diesel fuel price of $2.50 a gallon. Kodiak is now looking at installing an additional three turbines.
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  • Kokhanok – This 180kW project, which involves two reconditioned V-17 Vestas turbines in class six wind resource locations, was completed in just six months. The system is connected to 336kWh of nominal battery storage, and the excess electricity produces heats the school’s recirculation system. The turbines are integrated with advanced supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), allowing for remote control from Anchorage. A five-year operation, maintenance, and training commitment between Marsh Creek, LLC and the village of Kokhanok ensures long-term success, and the fully operational turbines have already significantly reduced village fuel consumption. Kokhanok’s 170 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.52/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.90/kWh.
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  • Kongigank: In 2009, the Puvurnaq Power Company began construction of a 450 kW high-penetration wind system in Kongigank with multiple thermal loads in residences and the nearby school. Kongigank’s 439 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.31/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.55/kWh. Projected is expected to be completed by 2013.
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  • Kotzebue – Boasting the first wind program in the state of Alaska, Kotzebue Electric Cooperative installed three 66-kW turbines in 1997. Another 7 were installed in 1999. Today the Kotzebue’s wind farm has grown to 17 wind turbines and represents the first megawatt of wind power in Alaska. Additionally, the farm displaces 80,000 gallons of diesel every year. In 2011, Kotzebue Electric began installing 900kW wind turbines and a high storage flow battery to maximize use of excess wind energy. Kotzebue’s 3,201 residents currently have a PCE rate of $ 0.26/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.42/kWh. Kotzebue hopes to eventually install a total of 2.95 MW, enough to meet the electric demand of Kotzebue during peak load.
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  • Kwigillingok- Kwigillingok began construction in 2010 and to date has erected two turbines. The entire system is projected to produce 450 kW. The entire integrated system will be commissioned by spring of 2013. Kwigillingok’s 321 residents have a PCE rate of $0.32/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.61/kWh.
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  • Mekoryuk – Alaska Village Electric Cooperative’s wind farm in Mekoryuk came online in November 2011. The wind project includes two Northwind 100 turbines and average displacement was estimated at 33,000 gallons per year. Mekoryuk’s 191 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.35/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.56/kWh.
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  • Nome – This 18 turbine wind farm capable of producing 1.2 MW of power came online in early 2009. Bering Straits Native Corp. and area village corporation Sitnasuak Native Corp. own the wind farm. The project produces about 10% of the electric load for Nome Joint Utilities. Nome Joint Utilities also has plans for a bigger wind farm that could generate up to 3 MW depending on wind conditions. Nome’s 3,98 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.15/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.35/kWh.
  • Pillar Mountain- In 2009, Kodiak Electric Association (KEA) expanded their current wind farm from three to six GE 1.5 MW SLE turbines. The total nameplate capacity of the expanded system was set at 9. The project is projected to be fully online by late 2012.
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  • Quinhagak – Alaska Village Electric Cooperative installed 3 Northwind 100 turbines in Quinhagak in 2010. This wind project displaces 37,536 gallons of diesel every year. Quinhagak’s 669 residents currently have a PCE of $0.33/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.54/kWh.
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  • Saint Paul Island – This high-penetration, no-storage, wind-diesel power system was installed by TDX Power and Northern Power Systems in 1998 to run an industrial facility and airport complex on the island of St. Paul. The 500 kW wind-diesel cogeneration system cost approximately $1.2 million. According to TDX, the system has eliminated $200,000 per year in utility electric charges and $50,000 per year in diesel heating fuel since its installation in 1999.
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  • Sand Point- Coordinated by Aleutian Wind Energy, the Sand Point Wind Project began construction in 2009. To date turbines have been erected and set to produce 330 kW of power, thereby displacing 152,318 gallons of diesel every year. Sand Point’s 976 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.34/ kWh and an Average Residential Rate of 0.54/kWh.
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  • Savoonga – Savoonga’s two Northwind 100 wind turbines with a generating capacity of 200 kW came online in the fall of 2008 and are operated by Alaska Village Electric Cooperative. Total wind-diesel generating capacity is 1,870 kWh. Savoonga’s 672 residents have a PCE rate of $0.27/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.48/kWh.
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  • Selawik – Selawik, the first integrated wind-diesel facility the Alaska Village Electric Cooperative built in 2002, has four AOC 65-kW turbines with a generating capacity of 260 kW combined with a diesel for a total generating capacity of 1,647 kW. In 2011, AVEC began looking into upgrading the facility, switching out old AOC turbines with newer model. Selawik 829 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.35/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.56/kWh.
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  • Shaktoolik- The Alaska Village Electric Cooperative has begun installing two Northwind 100-kilowatt turbines, plus secondary heat loads, load controllers and new switchgear. The two Northwind Wind Turbines were fully commissioned, remotely monitored and controlled as of July 15, 2012. The newly up-graded AVEC power systems are fully functioning and operating according to design as of August 15, 2012. The project displaces 8,468 gallons of diesel every year. Shaktoolik’s 251 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.38/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.59/kWh.
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  • Toksook Bay – The wind-diesel power system at Toksook Bay includes three Northern Power Systems Northwind 100kW turbines, diesel engines, and a computer-controlled resistive heater supplying community heating loads. It serves approximately 1,160 people in the communities of Toksook Bay, Nightmute, and Tununak and offset around 46,000 gallons of diesel in its first year of operation (August 2007 – September 2008), about 22 percent of total consumption.
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  • Unalakleet – Unalakleet installed six 100-kilowatt wind turbines that were commissioned in November 2009. As of November 2010, the system had produced 697,929 kWh of electricity, which is equivalent to $139,585 (based on $.20/kWh) or 53,686 gallons of diesel fuel. The city’s 688 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.18/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.38 kWh. http://northernpower.kiosk-view.com/unalakleet
  • Wales - Wales has two Atlantic Orient Corporation 65-kW turbines that are owned by Kotzebue Electric Association. They aren’t fully operational but have provided valuable information related to wind-diesel integration. Wale’s population of 145 currently has a PCE rate of $0.42/kWh and an Average Residential Rate of $0.63/kWh.
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In Construction

  • Buckland, Deering, Noorvik- The wind projects located in Buckland, Deering and Noorvik, are coordinated by Northwest Arctic Borough. This 800 kW capacity project began construction in 2010 and is projected to displace 54,560 gallons of diesel every year.
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  • Deering- In 2012, Alaskan Energy Association accepted Deering’s wind feasibility and the project is ready to progress with the conceptual design phase.
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  • Egegik- Lake and Peninsula Borough has received a grant from the Renewable Energy Fund in 2013 for this Bristol Bay area wind project.
  • Eva Creek – Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) is moving forward with plans to construct a 24-megawatt wind farm in Eva Creek near Healy. The project would include 16 turbines at 1.5 MW each. This would represent about 20 percent of GVEA’s peak load. They hope to commence construction soon and begin producing power in 2012.
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  • Kipnuk, Kongiganak, Kwigillingok, and Tuntatuliak - The Chaninik Wind Group is working to install 450 kW wind turbines in each of these locations. These high penetration smart grid turbines, which will allow excess wind energy to provide heat for homes, are currently under construction, with commissioning expected in September 2011.
  • Newton Peak- Located in Nome, this 2,970 kW capacity wind project is coordinated by Nome Joint Utility Systems and will be completed in 2013.
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  • Pilot Point – The City of Pilot Point was recently awarded a grant to install a 300kW wind project near Point Pilot. The project is currently under construction.
  • Point Hope- In 2011, the North Slope Borough commenced final designs for a 300 kW wind project with associated integration components in Point Hope.
  • Port Heiden- Lake and Pen Borough proposed a design and construction project for a 330kW wind turbine in Port Heiden and has received funding from the Renewable Energy Fund in 2011.
  • Quinhagak- In 2008, the Alaska Village Electric Cooperative began completing the final design, permitting, construction, erection, start up and commissioning of three Northwind 100 wind turbines in Quinhagak. The turbines are currently up and working.
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  • St. George- Coordinated by City of St. George, this wind diesel project began construction in 2013 and is set to serve the community of St. George in the Aleutians. St. George’s 102 residents currently have a PCE rate of $0.48/kWh and an average residential rate of $0.64/kWh.
  • St. Mary’s/ Pitka’s Point- The Alaska Village Electric Company began work on this project’s final design in 2012.
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  • Tuntutuliak- The Alaska Energy Authority and the Tuntutuliak Community Services Association constructed a 450KW high penetration wind-diesel system that powers the town of Tuntutuliak. The $3.7 million project is using 3-phase power lines, variable speed controllers, and secondary loads to maximize use of the turbine.
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  • Wainwright- The North Slope Borough commenced the final design phase in 2011 for the proposed 300 kW wind project with associated integration components in in Wainwright.

Who we are

Renewable Energy Alaska Project is a coalition of energy stakeholders working to facilitate the development of renewable energy in Alaska through collaboration, education, training, and advocacy.