Energy Update 6-20-2012
Much of the recent energy focus has been on Shell’s looming Arctic exploratory drilling. As rigs get ready to sail for Alaska in anticipation of exploratory drilling later this summer, Shell still needs 35 more permits before it will be allowed to drill. Last week, Shell was notified that it must undergo additional testing to examine the safety equipment designed to stop the flow of an oil well blowout. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement is also requiring the presence of offshore drilling inspectors round the clock on drilling rigs to closely watch the oil exploration activities.
The rest of Alaska is concentrating on renewable energy, especially in rural towns and villages. Earlier this month, the Venetie Village council, the Native Village of Kwinhagak/Quinhagak, the Native Village of Teller and the Village of Kake were all awarded support from the U.S. Department of Energy in the form of technical assistance for clean energy efforts. This support will create local jobs and improve energy self-sufficiency. Read about individual projects here.
The Great Alaska Energy Challenge, organized by the Renewable Energy Alaska Project, ended last month and four winners were chosen. Alaska Energy Authority, Palmer Junior Middle School Energy Dawgs, City of Homer Sewer and Cordova High School each won one of four different categories, having all cut their energy use significantly. The contest was sponsored by Alaska Housing Finance Corporation and pitted teams across the state together for a 6 month challenge in cutting energy use. Teams cut $40,000 off their energy costs during that time period.
It is going to be a busy summer for wind power in Alaska. The Fire Island Wind Project, near Anchorage, is in the construction phase with crews undertaking ground work at the Fire Island site and pieces of the turbines being transported. A transmission cable is being buried along Raspberry Road to allow transmission of electricity into town. Kodiak Electric Association is adding three new turbines to its wind farm which currently supplies Kodiak with just under 10% of its power. These turbines will be operational in September if all goes well.
AK Renewable Energy Fair
Aug. 11 • Anchorage Parkstrip
Sign up for 2012 Fair Updates: click here
Don’t miss this annual FREE event on the Memorial Parkstrip in downtown Anchorage. Come down to enjoy the live music, crafts, organic and local food, informational booths, children’s activities and expert panels on renewable energy, do-it-yourself projects and energy efficiency. Registration for vendors starts June 1. Contact Erin Jones at 929.7770 or email@example.com