122 research outputs found

    True Cost of Electricity in Rural Alaska and True Cost of Bulk Fuel in Rural Alaska

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    In this analysis, we compile data from several sources to estimate the true cost of electricity in rural Alaska. The true cost includes expenses listed on the utilities’ books plus costs paid by other entities in the form of explicit and implicit subsidies. Our focus is on the nonfuel costs of power. Fuel costs are quite volatile and are tracked carefully by AEA on a monthly basis. The concept of “Fuel cost” typically includes the price paid at the point of delivery into a bulk storage tank. We do include here as contributed resources the estimated subsidies to the fuel delivery system for electricity due to provision of bulk fuel storage by, for example, the Denali Commission.Prepared for Alaska Affordable Energy Strategy Neil McMahon, Project ManagerTrue Cost of Electricity in Rural Alaska / Introduction / Data Sources / Data Issues and Caveats / Data Compilation Notes / Non-Booked Contributed Resources / Analysis / Results / Caveats on Interpretation of Results / Appendix to True Cost of Electric Service in Rural Alaska / True Cost of Bulk Fuel in Rural Alaska / Methodology / Bulk Fuel Program Cost Compilation and Cost Allocations / Results / Appendix to True Cost of Bulk Fuel in Rural Alask

    Benefits and Costs to Rural Alaska Households from a Carbon Fee and Dividend Program - Final Report

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    This paper analyzes the benefits and costs of a carbon fee‐and‐dividend (CFD) policy to individual rural Alaska households. The three study area regions are the Bethel Census Area, the Kusilvak Census Area, and the Northwest Arctic Borough. These three regions have the state’s highest fuel prices and very cold climates. The CFD policy consists of two elements.  The first is a fee of 15permetrictonofCO2beginningin2016andincreasingby15 per metric ton of CO2 beginning in 2016 and increasing by 10 per ton in each subsequent year. The second is the complete return of all fees to households in the form of dividends, which are estimated to equal 300foreachadultplus300 for each adult plus 150 for each child (up to two). The annual dividends would increase in future years commensurate with the nationwide total amount of fees. Baseline conditions.  The study area has a total population of about 32,000 people, many of whom live in large households with low cash income. Fuel prices averaged $6.62 per gallon in January 2015.Citizens' Climate Education CorporationSummary / Introduction / Dividends to households / Carbon fees paid by households / Discussion / References / Appendix A. Residential electricity use per househol

    Benefits and Costs to Rural Alaska Households from a Carbon Fee and Dividend Program

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    This paper analyzes the benefits and costs of a carbon fee‐and‐dividend (CFD) policy to individual rural Alaska households. The three study area regions are the Bethel Census Area, the Wade Hampton Census Area, and the Northwest Arctic Borough. These three regions have the state’s highest fuel prices and very cold climates. The CFD policy consists of two elements.  The first is a fee of 15permetrictonofCO2beginningin2016andincreasingby15 per metric ton of CO2 beginning in 2016 and increasing by 10 per ton in each subsequent year. The second is the complete return of all fees to households in the form of dividends, which are estimated to equal 300foreachadultplus300 for each adult plus 150 for each child (up to two). The annual dividends would increase in future years commensurate with the total amount of fees.Citizens' Climate Education CorporationSummary / Introduction / Dividends to households / Carbon fees paid by households / Discussion / Reference

    Economic Analysis of an Integrated Wind-Hydrogen Energy System for a Small Alaska Community

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    Wind-hydrogen systems provide one way to store intermittent wind energy as hydrogen. We explored the hypothesis that an integrated wind-hydrogen system supplying electricity, heat, and transportation fuel could serve the needs of an isolated (off-grid) Alaska community at a lower cost than a collection of separate systems. Analysis indicates that: 1) Combustible Hydrogen could be produced with current technologies for direct use as a transportation fuel for about $15/gallon-equivalent; 2) The capital cost of the wind energy rather than the capital cost of electrolyzers dominates this high cost; and 3) There do not appear to be diseconomies of small scale for current electrolyzers serving a a village of 400 people.United States Department of Energy. DOE Award Number: DE-FC26-01NT41248Introduction / Executive Summary / Experimental Methods / Results and Discussion / Conclusion / Bibliography / Appendix: Associated Excel Workbook

    Economic Importance of Sportfishing in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough

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    We have estimated the economic benefits of sport fishing activity occurring within the Matanuska-Susitna (Mat-Su) Borough, using data from year 2007. Our estimates are based on the recent study entitled, Economic Impacts and Contributions of Sportfishing in Alaska, 2007. 2 It contains estimates of angler spending patterns within three regions: Southcentral, Interior, and Southeast. We also used year 2007 data from the ADFG annual Statewide Harvest Survey (SWHS).3 These data allow us to allocate economic benefits to the Mat-Su Borough.Matanuska-Susitna Borough Ecnomic Development DepartmentSummary / Introduction / Methods / Results / Reference

    Benefits of the Southcentral Rail Extension to the Municipality of Anchorage

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    The proposed Southcentral rail extension to Port MacKenzie is likely to generate significant economic benefits for the residents of Anchorage. These benefits are due to a combination of reduced transport costs, the ability to ship bulk commodities over shorter distances, and economical access to industrial land. We considered and analyzed these benefits under a set of assumptions about job creation, transportation costs, land use considerations and future mineral development. Our major findings include the following: Jobs • Port MacKenzie. The rail extension will generate new jobs for Anchorage workers by stimulating industrial development and jobs at Port MacKenzie. Under a base case scenario with a rail extension and ferry service, Anchorage residents would gain 730 average annual jobs and 50millionofannualincomeduringtheperiodof20132017fromindustrialdevelopmentatPortMacKenzie.Hundredsmorejobswouldbegainedafter2017.Therailextensionwillplayanimportantroleinthisprocess.Forexample,itwillallowcoalexportsthroughtheportasearlyas2013,generatingmorethan100jobs.NewMines.Majornewminesshippingconcentrateviatherailextensionwouldgeneratethousandsofnewjobs,andasignificantfractionofthesejobswouldbeheldbyAnchorageresidents.Ourdetailedanalysisofthepotentialemploymentfromfivespecificminingprojectsindicatesthatmorethan2,000averageannualjobswouldbecreatedinAnchorageorheldbyAnchorageresidentsoncetheminesarefullydeveloped.Mostofthesejobswouldbeinminingandinprofessionalsectorsthatpaygoodwages.Also,duringinitialminedevelopment,manyofthejobswouldbeinconstructionandfabrication.RailConstruction.Theconstructionoftherailextensionwouldgenerateupto3,000totaljobs,andongoingoperationswouldgenerateupto150totaljobs.ItislikelythatmanyofthesejobswouldbeheldbyAnchorageresidents.StateRevenues.StateminingtaxesgeneratedfromnewmineswillboosttheAnchorageeconomy.Estimatedtaxrevenuesandroyaltieswouldgrowsteadily,reaching50 million of annual income during the period of 2013 -2017 from industrial development at Port MacKenzie. Hundreds more jobs would be gained after 2017. The rail extension will play an important role in this process. For example, it will allow coal exports through the port as early as 2013, generating more than 100 jobs. • New Mines. Major new mines shipping concentrate via the rail extension would generate thousands of new jobs, and a significant fraction of these jobs would be held by Anchorage residents. Our detailed analysis of the potential employment from five specific mining projects indicates that more than 2,000 average annual jobs would be created in Anchorage or held by Anchorage residents once the mines are fully developed. Most of these jobs would be in mining and in professional sectors that pay good wages. Also, during initial mine development, many of the jobs would be in construction and fabrication. • Rail Construction. The construction of the rail extension would generate up to 3,000 total jobs, and ongoing operations would generate up to 150 total jobs. It is likely that many of these jobs would be held by Anchorage residents. • State Revenues. State mining taxes generated from new mines will boost the Anchorage economy. Estimated tax revenues and royalties would grow steadily, reaching 267 million per year by 2040. A large share of these potential tax revenues, roughly proportional to Anchorage’s share of state population, would likely flow into the Anchorage economy, sustaining hundreds of direct jobs and reducing property tax burdens that would otherwise stifle private sector job creation. Regional Competitiveness • New Economic Opportunities. Port MacKenzie and the rail extension, operating together, are a significant new strategic asset for the entire regional economy. This infrastructure will create expanded opportunities for mineral, timber, and energy resource development, and the export of bulk commodities by rail through Port MacKenzie constitutes a new economic sector for the Southcentral regional economy. As the region’s commercial and financial hub, Anchorage will gain jobs and income from all of this activity. • More Efficient Land Use. The rail extension allows for higher-valued use of land in Anchorage. The rail extension will allow for railroad-dependent industrial development to take place at Port MacKenzie. This development would allow limited existing industrialzoned land throughout Anchorage to be used for other, higher-value uses such as commercial development, while still meeting the regional economy’s need for industrial land. Fiscal Benefits • New State Revenues. As noted above, revenues to the State of Alaska from new resource development would grow steadily, reaching $267 million per year by 2040. These revenues will reduce the need for other taxes, stimulating capital formation and job creation by the private sector. • Higher Local Tax Base. Local governments will also see higher tax revenues from a higher-valued property tax base. The stimulated new development will increase the tax base and reduce the need to raise taxes on homeowners or existing businesses. Other Benefits • Port of Anchorage. The industrial and mineral development stimulated by the rail extension to Port MacKenzie will likely increase both the volume and the value of cargo going through the Port of Anchorage. For example, if large mines are developed, the goods and equipment used by the mines for development and operations will flow through Anchorage. • Rail Shipping Costs. The unit cost of shipping on the Alaska Railroad is likely to fall as fixed costs of roadbed maintenance and administration are spread over a higher volume of shipments.Matanuska - Susitna Borough Economic Development DepartmentIntroduction / Two Municipalities, One Regional Economy / Overview of Potential Benefits to Anchorage from the Rail Extension / Benefits from Construction and Operation of the Rail Extension / Benefits from Industrial Development at Port MacKenzie / Benefits from Employment of Anchorage Residents due to Railroad-Dependent Mineral Development / Appendix: Notes on Methodolog

    Socioeconomic Impacts of Potential Wishbone Hill Coal Mining Activity

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    The purpose of this study is to assess some of the significant socioeconomic effects of potential coal mining activity at Wishbone Hill. The analysis scenario assumes a 16-year period of startup and mine production using two known deposits that are currently permitted by the State of Alaska for mineral exploration. “Mine Area 1” would be mined during years 2-7 and “Mine Area 2” would be mined during years 8-16. Mining would only take place at one of these areas during any given time. We considered four kinds of effects: Jobs and income, fiscal impacts, property values, and traffic.Matanuska - Susitna Borough Economic Development DepartmentIntroduction / Coal Mining Scenario / Projected Jobs and Income / Fiscal Impacts / Property Values / Traffic / References / Appendix: Notes on Methodolog

    Benefit-Cost Assessment of the Port Mackenzie Rail Extension

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    Costs We assume that the Port MacKenzie rail extension would cost 275milliontoconstruct.1Thisisaconservativeestimatebasedonarangeofbetween275 million to construct.1 This is a conservative estimate based on a range of between 200 million and 300 million for different route options. The time horizon runs 50 years from 2012 to 2061. O&M costs are assumed to be 1.5 million per year, with a net present value of 26.1million.Thenetpresentvalueofallcostsusinga526.1 million. The net present value of all costs using a 5% real discount rate2 and a base year of 2010 is 301.1 million. Benefits The rail extension would provide two distinct types of benefits: 1) It reduces the cost of rail transportation; and 2) It is likely to stimulate significant new mines and other major development. These benefits come from a diverse mix of potential projects – thus a strength of the rail extension is that its economic viability does not depend on any one project. Reduced transportation costs Relative to Seward, using the extension would save 140.7 miles per one-way trip.3 Assuming an average cost savings of 6 cents per ton-mile and a 5.0% real discount rate, we estimate that using the extension would save $572 million in avoided rail costs, avoided port costs, and avoided railroad and road upgrades. These savings are shown in the table and figure on the following page. In addition to the above, we estimate that about 22,000 train crossings of Pittman Road and other roads would be avoided by the extension, saving motorists up to 64,000 vehicle-hours of travel time delay between now and 2061.Matanuska- Susitna BoroughExecutive Summary / Introduction / Benefits from Reduced Transportation Costs / Fiscal benefits to State of Alaska / Community and Regional Economic Impacts / Reference

    Benefits of the Cook Inlet Ferry to the Municipality of Anchorage

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    The purpose of this study is to examine the economic benefits of the Cook Inlet Ferry to the Municipality of Anchorage. The Cook Inlet Ferry is currently being built at the Ketchikan, Alaska shipyard. The U.S. Navy has financed construction of the ferry as a prototype military landing craft for northern, ice-filled waters. The Matanuska-Susitna Borough paid for Ferry engineering, design, and outfitting with federal transit monies. Following short-term Navy testing of the craft, it will be transferred to the Borough to provide ferry service in Cook Inlet. The Borough will provide operating and maintenance information to the Navy on an ongoing basis. The Borough will operate the ferry, which will provide regular service between Anchorage and Port MacKenzie as well as service to other points on Cook Inlet. The Ferry is expected to be operational by 2010.Matanuska - Susitna Borough Economic Development DepartmentIntroduction / Two Municipalities, One Regional Economy / Potential Benefits of the Cook Inlet Ferry / Economic Impacts on Anchorage of Industrial Development at Port MacKenzie / Conclusion / References / Appendix: Notes on Methodolog

    Economic Impacts of the South Denali Implementation Plan

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    This study estimates the economic effects of carrying out the South Denali Implementation Plan. The plan provides for construction of new visitor facilities in the South Denali Region. ISER economists used the IMPLAN input-output modeling system to project the jobs, income, and sales due to 1) initial construction activity; 2) ongoing operation and maintenance expenses; and 3) additional visitation and visitor spending attributable to the new facilities. The model results include the effects at the Mat-Su Borough and statewide Alaska levels. Local area impacts are also estimated. Suggested Citation: Colt, Steve, Fay, Ginny, Szymoniak, Nick. 2008. Economic Impact of the South Denali Implementation Plan. Prepared for the National Park Service, Denali National Park and Preserve and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough Planning and Land Use Department. Anchorage: University of Alaska Anchorage Institute of Social and Economic Research.National Park ServiceExecutive Summary / Introduction / Economic Impact Analysis / The Project Plan / Baseline Situation / Scenarios of Future Activity / Result
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