Electrical energy generation in the north
October 17, 2012
The attached table shows the major electrical generation facilities for Alaska and the three northern territories.
- Alaska produces about 9% of its electricity from coal. It recently cut-over the Fire Island wind farm and has plans for a very large hydro facility about a decade from now.
- Yukon is mostly on hydro power but is nearing capacity with the cut-over of a gold mine near Mayo in 2015 and continued population growth.
- NWT is mixed hydro and diesel with some natural gas. It has a small grid near the capital city, Yellowknife, but most communities are stand-alone.
- Nunavut is wholly diesel with all communities isolated. The sea-lift is used for fuel delivery. The plant facilities are old and generally in need of replacement.
Alaska has a much larger population, more depth of generating capacity and solid long term plans. It’s rates are the lowest in the north.
All three northern territories are in the midst of rate increases/rebalancing.
- a) U.S. Energy Information Administration, Form EIA-860, "Annual Electric Generator Report." see http://www.eia.gov/electricity/state/alaska/