biomass

U.S. Department of Energy

The lights are back on in Fort Yukon, including the Christmas trees, now that three of the village’s four electrical generators are functioning again.
A couple of weeks ago, the holidays didn’t look so happy for the remote Yukon River community, when all but one of its generators broke down. But the community got through by cutting back and helping each other out.
And it all happened just as the utility was planning to build a new powerplant that will reduce their dependence on diesel-fueled generators.


Alaska Center for Energy and Power

The Ninth Rural Energy Conference gets under way Tuesday here in Fairbanks. The three-day gathering of experts and advocates will examine how Alaska’s rural residents get electricity, and how they might get it in the future more efficiently – and less expensively.


U.S. Department of Agriculture

A Native village corporation near Tok and the utility that serves that area have partnered up on a venture to build a small hydroelectric project that could reduce the area’s high energy costs. Alaska Power and Telephone officials say the partnership will now seek state and private funding and for the $19 million project.


KUAC file photo

Alaska Power Company customers in Tok and other small communities in the eastern Interior saw their electricity bills go up this year.  Utility rate hikes are nothing new in rural Alaska, but they aren’t always strictly due to rising fuel prices.  Some Alaska Power customers are frustrated because they’re being charged more in part because of efforts to conserve electricity – and generate it themselves.


KUAC file photo

Business and community leaders in Tok are trying to revive a plan to cut the area’s high energy costs by generating electricity using biomass. That’s a type of fuel made from grinding timber like black spruce into chips. Backers of the plan want the state to give them a break on timber-sale contract conditions to help attract financing for a biomass-fired powerplant. They say that’s what put the plan on hold last year.


Tim Ellis/KUAC file photo

The Alaska Division of Forestry has given the go-ahead to a long-term timber sales contract that would allow a company to harvest trees on state forest land around Tok. The timber would be used as fuel for a proposed biomass power-generating station that would provide electricity for the community – and make the area safer from wildfires.


A citizens advisory panel has given qualified support to the state Forestry division’s plan to sell timber around Tok for a proposed biomass-fueled heat and power plant that’s been proposed to help cut the cost of electricity for that community.


Tim Ellis/KUAC

A utility’s proposal to generate heat and electricity for Tok with a renewable energy source is moving ahead again now that the state Division of Forestry has revised its original plan on managing a long-term timber-sales contract that would provide the biomass to fuel the alternative-energy system.

Alaska Gateway School District

The high cost of heat and electricity costs in the Interior have driven many communities to look for cheaper alternative forms of energy, including biomass, in the form of locally harvested timber processed into chips and burned in high-tech boilers.

Dan Bross

The city of Tanana is looking forward to lower fuel bills. The city is adding new biomass systems, enabling it to swap more high priced oil for locally available wood. KUAC’s Dan Bross reports.

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