Energy Transformation in Alaska: Turning our oil wealth into clean energy
This episode is a deep dive into Alaska’s transition to renewable energy, including innovations taking place in rural Alaska and opportunities for renewable energy along the railbelt.
Thanks to Marion Owen Photography for sharing her beautiful imagery of life on Kodiak.
Chris Rose, Renewable Energy Alaska Project
Chris Rose is the founder and Executive Director of Renewable Energy Alaska Project (REAP), a non-profit coalition of over 75 energy stakeholder organizations working to increase the development of renewable energy and promote energy efficiency across Alaska. Before establishing REAP in 2004, Mr. Rose had a private law practice for over a decade that included work in northwest Arctic villages and the mediation of a variety disputes around the state. He is currently the chairman of the state’s Renewable Energy Fund Advisory Committee. Mr. Rose also served on climate action advisory committees for Governors Sarah Palin and Bill Walker. He holds a law degree from the University of Oregon.
Darron Scott, Kodiak Electric Association
Darron Scott has been the President and CEO of Kodiak Electric Association, Inc. (KEA) since 2000. He was recognized as a leader in the Alaskan utility industry with the Alaska’s Top 40 Under 40 Award by the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce and the Director’s Corporate Stewardship Award by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Prior to his work in Alaska, he served as a Production Superintendent and Project Manager at Texas Utilities. He received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University.
Stosh Anderson, Commercial Fisherman
Stosh Anderson has been a full-time commercial fisherman since 1977. He has served on the Kodiak Electric Association Board of Directors since 2000 helping to steer the utility’s advances in renewable energy. Anderson developed a range of skills working as a mechanic in high school, learning to fly at 18, and working construction around Alaska as a member of Operating Engineers Local 302. He experimented early with renewable energy, installing a wind turbine on his family’s home in Levelock in 1984. Anderson served on the Alaska Water Resource Board, the North Pacific Fishery Management Council, and was a founding member of Alaska Marine Conservation Council.
More information on topics discussed in this episode:
- Energy efficiency in Alaska – Between 2008 and 2018, programs improved efficiency in more than 50,000 households, resulting in an average energy savings of 30 percent, the creation of more than 4,000 jobs, and an estimated $56 million in energy savings per year. To learn more:
> Renewable Energy Alaska Project (REAP)
> Alaska Housing Finance Corporation
- Renewable energy in Alaska – Since 2008 nearly 100 projects have been built with financing from the state, mostly in rural Alaska. To learn more:
> For an overview – Initiatives at Renewable Energy Alaska Project
> University of Alaska Fairbanks – Alaska Center for Energy and Power
> Alaska Energy Authority – Renewable Energy Fund
- If you live on the rail belt – that is, between Homer and Fairbanks – visit Alaska Center for Energy and Power to find out how you can cost-effectively add solar panels to your home or business, and even sell extra power back to the utility – “2021 Alaska Railbelt Net Metering Update”
- U.S. Department of Energy reviews innovations in renewable energy in Kotzebue, Kodiak, and Cordova – “Energy transition in the transitioning north”