Alaska’s Renewable Energy Policy Proposals

There are at least three bills that are aimed at growing Alaska’s renewable energy production:

Senate Bill 152 would allow neighbors to group together to put up small-scale renewable energy projects. That could be a small solar farm, or even a wind or hydroelectric project.

Senate Bill 125, proposed by Gov. Mike Dunleavy, would establish what’s called a “green bank” under the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation.

Known as the “Alaska Energy Independence Fund,” the green bank would provide loans to families and rural utilities to help finance sustainable energy projects, including power generation and storage, as well as efficiency improvements.

Sen. Löki Tobin, an Anchorage Democrat, and Rep. Jesse Sumner, a Wasilla Republican, are pushing a “renewable portfolio standard,” also known as an RPS, for Railbelt utilities. The RPS bill sets benchmarks for how much of a utility’s power generation should come from renewable sources.

In this case, the bill proposes a standard to ensure 25% of Railbelt power is generated by renewable methods by 2027, which Tobin calls “very achievable.” It aims for 80% renewables by 2040.

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