Alaska Power & Telephone (AP&T) has applied to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in the US for permission to develop a 25MW hydropower project near the City of Skagway in southeast Alaska.

The company has filed a preliminary permit application for the West Creek hydropower project, which would be located on West Creek, a tributary of the Taiya River. The project would provide a new supply of energy to the communities of Skagway and Haines, reducing dependency on diesel-fired generation. Energy surpluses not used by the community could be used to power cruise ships berthing in Haines and Skagway, and help meet the growing energy needs of Canada’s neighboring Yukon Territory, AP&T said in a statement.

"AP&T has licensed and developed four hydropower projects in Alaska since the mid-1990s"

AP&T has licensed and developed four hydropower projects in Alaska since the mid-1990s. These new projects have helped AP&T’s service areas transition from 90% dependency on costly diesel fuel, to 75% clean, renewable energy. Hydropower projects developed by AP&T include Kasidaya Creek and South Fork, as well as Black Bear Lake and Goat Lake – the first two certified Low Impact Hydropower projects in the State of Alaska.

In conjunction with their preliminary permit application, AP&T provided a letter to the Municipality of Skagway, clarifying their intent to partner and work closely with the municipality and the community, so that West Creek can be developed in a manner which is consistent with stakeholder expectations and community development plans.

While AP&T and the Municipality of Skagway have considered the West Creek opportunity for a number of years, AP&T’s decision to apply for a preliminary permit is a new step reflecting a serious commitment to pursue the project.