Alaska’s First Utility Scale Wind Power Project to Begin Construction

October 28, 2011

The first utility scale wind project in Alaska, Fire Island, will soon begin construction outside of Anchorage. The first phase of the project is scheduled to be completed in 2012, and is predicted to produce enough electricity to power 6,000 households.

Fire Island will be constructed three miles west of Anchorage, by the project developers, Cook Inlet Region, Inc. (CIRI). The island will have 11 wind turbines, with a combined rated capacity of 17.6 megawatts that will produce approximately 51 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity each year.

The final hurdle for the construction of Fire Island was cleared when a power purchase agreement between CIRI and the Chugach Electric Association (CEA) was been approved by the Regulatory Commission of Alaska. The power purchase agreement ensures that the wind electricity generated on Fire Island will be purchased by the CEA at a price of $0.096 per kWh for the next 25 years.

Once the Fire Island project is completed, the electricity generated will provide the CEA with about 4% of their total electric load. To learn more about the Fire Island project, read the Oct. 19 CIRI press release.