Coal, Pebbles and Clear Skies. In case you have not been watching, plans are in the making for a major change in local electrical economics. The entire consumption of electrical power on the Kenai provided by HEA is just under 80 megawatts. The coal fired project starting up for the Pebbles Mine will be around 450 megawatts of generation. The coal gasification will also set the economic anchor that keeps Agrium solvent and providing jobs on the peninsula.
Clean coal technology has been around a while and from the acid rain perspective is quite efficient; but I hope you like that clean burnt coal scent, because it will be everywhere in the Cook Inlet Basin from now on.
Talk of wind and alternative sources have never hit the mark of meeting high demands. There is a lake that is absolutely perfect for hydro power on the west side of the inlet close to existing power lines.
The Chakachamna, like Bradley Lake, is a high mountain glacial-fed lake perfect for hydro so greenies might squeal, but it’s that or coal. Maybe we should ask former President Jimmy Carter if it would be OK to make a little of the Lake Clark Wilderness wet and save the fresh air.
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