Tag Archives: Energy

Southeast Hydropower Plant Approaches Completion

From APRN, Monday, August 23, 2010:

A Southeast Alaska hydropower plant is closer to completion. A $9 million Alaska Energy Authority grant is the final piece of the funding puzzle for the Prince of Wales Island’s Reynolds Creek project.

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Maine company says underwater turbine is a success

From The Associated Press, Wednesday, August 18, 2010:

A developer of tidal power in the nation’s northeastern corner is reporting success with its first commercial-sized underwater turbine, putting it on track to have one connected to the power grid by the end of 2011, officials said Wednesday.
Ocean Renewable Power Co. describes its proprietary 60-kilowatt turbine generator as the largest ocean energy power plant ever installed in U.S. waters.

So far, the unit has met or exceeded specifications for power in testing this year in the waters of eastern Maine, said Chris Sauer, president and CEO.

“It’s a critical step to our first commercial unit that’ll be connected to the grid in little more than a year now,” Sauer told The Associated Press. He touted the underwater turbine’s success as “a huge milestone for America’s ocean energy industry.”

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Akutan geothermal test exceeding expectation

From APRN, Friday, August 13, 2010:

For years, the Aleutian village of Akutan has seen the energy potential in its hot springs and fumaroles. Now, it looks like that potential might be realized.

In July, work began on two exploratory wells. The first one was drilled on July 16, and it’s producing hot water at more than 360 degrees. The exploration team is drilling a second well, and they’re optimistic that the water will be similarly warm.

If it is, the exploration phase will end and the city of Akutan will start working on a power plant that would harness the steam from the ground and use it to power electrical turbines. Ray Mann is Akutan’s project manager, and he’s been working closely on the exploration project. He explains that Akutan – with its hot water at shallow depths – is particularly well suited for a renewable energy project like this.

Right now, Akutan uses diesel as its main energy source.  Mann says because the cost of energy is already high and expected to get higher in the future, a geothermal plant could help save Akutan’s residents a good deal of money.

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Energy project in southeast Alaska village under way

From Capital City Weekly, Monday, August 9, 2010:

Residents of Juneau concerned with an increase in their monthly utility bills might find it easy to forget that in some Southeast communities, energy woes have been a constant issue for years. Rural areas like Angoon, heavily dependent on fossil fuels, face energy prices as high as ten times the national average. A new project, headed by the Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska, aims to change that.

Dan Lesh, energy coordinator for the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council, said the goal of the sustainability project is to show how efficiency and renewability can cut energy costs in rural villages.

Lesh said the cost of energy is exceptionally high in Angoon. The upper limit can be as high as $1,200 per month for a single household, he said, with the average cost in the $300 to $500 range.

“It’s one of the biggest issues in these small communities,” Lesh said.

A Push for Action on Renewables

From The New York Times, Wednesday, July 28, 2010:

With a cap on carbon dioxide an apparent nonstarter in the Senate these days, some clean energy and climate advocates have shifted their sights to a scaled-back but still ambitious goal: passage of a national renewable electricity standard.

Such a law would require utility companies to produce a set amount of electricity from renewable sources by a certain date, spurring the development of clean sources like wind and solar and probably lowering overall emissions nationally. Perhaps most important, some argue that with a strong push by the president, such a measure could actually clear the high bar for passage of 60 votes in the Senate this fall.

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Kodiak plant to tout sustainable energy tie

From The Associated Press, Thursday, July 22, 2010:

Salmon processed at a Kodiak plant will be getting a new tag.

Island Seafoods plans to tout the plant’s connection with sustainable energy on a new label.

General manager John Whiddon tells the Kodiak Daily Mirror it may say, “sustainable fish produced by clean, sustainable wind turbine energy.”

Island Seafoods uses power that’s produced in part by Kodiak Electric Association’s Pillar Mountain wind turbines.

The utility began using the three 1.5 megawatt turbines last summer. They have saved the utility more than 900,000 gallons of diesel fuel.

The utility’s president, Darron Scott, suggested the joint marketing agreement with Island Seafoods.

Alaska Airlines joins biofuels study

From Alaska Dispatch:

According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Alaska Airlines is joining Boeing, a few northwest regional airports and Washington State University to study the feasibility of using biomass fuels in commercial aviation. The program, known as “Sustainable Aviation Fuels Northwest,”  is to investigate the creation of an aviation biofuel industry as one way for the industry to reduce its carbon footprint. The effort will start in July and continue for six months. Read much more focused on Boeing, here. And for a report focused on the academic side of the partnership, read Biomass Magazine’s post, here.

Geothermal test project near King Salmon

From The Associated Press, Friday, June 9, 2010:

The Naknek Electric Association is drilling a well near King Salmon to test the potential for geothermal energy.

Association General Manager Donna Vukich told KTUU-TV the search for renewable energy from underground heat has been a 10-year, $20 million project. If successful it could serve villages across Bristol Bay. The project requires a second test well to be drilled in September.

Naknek Electric currently relies on diesel to generate electricity.

Hydroelectric project millions over budget

From The Associated Press, Sunday, July 4, 2010:

A Southeast Alaska hydroelectric project has come in millions over budget, but is expected to bring Juneau plenty of power for years to come.

Alaska Electric Light & Power now is trying to persuade the Regulatory Commission of Alaska to let it raise its rates.

The utility is trying to show that it deserves to collect an extra $15.8 million or more in additional revenue after finishing the project. The utility says it wants $12.6 million at first and the rest can come later.

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