SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Heating and power generation
By A.M.Johnson


November 04, 2009

Dear Editor:

Samuel Bergeron has it right, however I am not so sure that Petersburg and Wrangell, ahead of Ketchikan in this suggested heat form, has already been doing this to a high degree. It may be that the surplus power or the anticipated share of the Tyee power for Ketchikan is reduced up by these two town's recent and ongoing conversion activity to electrical heat.

I believe there is a factor available that would make this point mute if given the full cooperation of the Two Dam Pool Association. It is my understanding that Wrangell officials are involved with British Columbia power officials in a effort to develop cost analyses for bringing power lines down to the Bradfield Canal area.

It seems British Columbia resource development would be enhanced if natural resources mined in British Columbia could be delivered to the Bradfield for shipment by deep water vessels. The byproduct of this activity would be the incorporation of Tyee/Swan lake into the British Columbia power grid where excess power, as available, would be sold in U.S. Markets via the British Columbia power grid which extends throughout British Columbia. In turn, the power cost from British Columbia sources is touted to be a far less rate cost than that currently resulting from the Two Dam hydro formula. Now then Mr.Bergeron's suggestions would make even more sense for all three communities.(Maybe around 4.5 cents?)

The underlying basis for this inquiry is an old Sykes logging camp in the Bradfield Canal that has roads that end about 12 miles from British Columbia power source,and or the miles in British Columbia to the connection is only a few miles more. Power line development from this old logging camp to Tyee is very doable and not a high cost investment to complete the hookup.

Understand, there is no disagreement with exploring potential connections to Metlakatla excess power and the potential of a Federal Indian Reservation's unlimited access to Federal funds to expand their potential for revenue recovery, nor disagreement with exploring the tapping of the lake above Swan Lake to enhance the volume of Swan Lake. (Inclusion of a turbine to capture generation while controlling volume?) of that source Nor incorporating potential power from Mahoney or Short Bay sites. It remains that the British Columbia power gird currently exist and the cost of access to that vs.the other future options seems a no brainer.

Be advised that what I point out here is based on third hand discussions. The details as I have shown are subject to clarification. However, the concept of less expensive and abundant power from an existing source,such as British Columbia surely appeals to the discussion that Mr. Bergeron raises Not to leave out the potential of hydro production for future industrial use.

Somewhere I have picked up information that there is 2000 megawatt hydro potential in southeast where currently about 200 megawatts are being generated. Some say that the market for electrical power sales to the lower 48 could see real economical industrial development of this asset as a cash cow for Southeast communities or electrical pools, such as our Two Dam Pool, involved with that development. Mr. Bergeron's observations touch only the surface of that usage.


Ketchikan, AK

About: "Elder, pro development advocate with many years residency. "

Received November 03, 2009 - Published November 02, 2009


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Ketchikan, Alaska