Utilities

This page is a starting point to inform on Alaskan public utilities: electrical, telecommunications and heating sources.


Electrical


Golden Valley Electric Association

  • Golden Valley Electric Association – the official page. Check out the board page if you want a clue what they are up to in a macro sense.

  • gvea.blogspot.com – An attempt to get GVEA board, members, and staff engaging.
  • GVEA Ratepayers Alliance – a website, now defunct, that was intended to address issues related to the second tie-line across the Tanana Flats from Healy to Fairbanks in 2000-2001. The tie-line was eventually built.
  • Save GVEA – a website, now defunct, that started up to give facts on GVEA’s G&T proposal in Nov. 2006. The proposal was defeated by a vote of GVEA members.
    RCA website – the agency that regulates most utilities in Alaska.



Aurora Energy
This is the remains of the electric generation and co-generated steam and hot water distribution of the Fairbanks Municipal Utilities System (FMUS), which got sold to privately owned Aurora Energy, a subsidiary of Usibelli Coal, from which they get a preferential but secret rate for coal. Their complex consists of several coal fired generation units in the heart of Fairbanks. They sell all their power to GVEA.

March 20, 2004 – Aurora Energy recently announced their intention to raise rates. And raise them, they did. Check the RCA website to read the gory details.

They again asked to raise their steam rates substantially in 2013, under pressure to make more money (pun alert) and asking for equity in what they charge their distributed hot water customers. The safety record of Aurora Energy is pretty poor. One unlucky worker came close to be dragged into the coal conveyor in 2012, but for a safety trip switch. A few days later, that trip switch was disabled.


Natural Gas


Fairbanks Natural Gas (FNG) has been importing gas by truck from Anchorage and supply it to homes and businesses here. They said they had a problem with supply, with reduced supply in the Kenai. They only got to serving about 1,000 customers as of 2013, despite a promise some years back to expand much more rapidly.

In 2013, the Legislature laid out a process to get liquified natural gas trucked from Prudhoe Bay for distribution to the Fairbanks area. A joint project between AIDEA and AEA with contractor MWH Global, the project website is at www.interiorenergyproject.com
FNG and a new public utility Interior Alaska Natural Gas Utility (IGU) dogged it out before the RCA and each got a service territory around Fairbanks. There is, with anticipated gas delivery in 2015, about a 5-6 year window to get gas distribution lines up.



Regulatory Commission of Alaska


Current notices and orders on rates and other utility tariff changes are published by the Regulatory Commission of Alaska, a division of the Alaska State Department of Community and Economic Development.