Alaska Affordable Energy Strategy

  • Overview
  • Commissioned Reports
  • Presentations & Progress Reports
  • Alaska Affordable Energy Model

Alaska Affordable Energy Strategy Overview

The Alaska Energy Authority (AEA) was tasked in 2014 by the 28th Alaska Legislature to provide recommendations to improve the affordability of energy in areas of the state not serviced by the proposed natural gas pipeline (gasline). The Alaska Affordable Energy Strategy (AkAES) is the result of this effort.

The AkAES is a strategic plan to improve the methods by which the State works with non-Railbelt communities and utilities to identify, evaluate, develop and maintain cost-effective energy solutions. The strategy includes recommendations for policy, financing mechanisms, strengthened regulation and other administrative tools. The final report, submitted to the legislature on December 30, 2016, provides a high level summary of the AkAES research and reccomendations.

AkAES Summary Document

A longer, complementary report entitled "AkAES Methodology, Findings, and Recommendations" goes into greater detail. The report contains the backing documentation for the recommendations, laid out in a logical framework.

Chapter 1 provides an overview of the research and resources that were brought to bear for this project.

Chapters 2 and 3 describe how and why energy is less affordable in some areas of the state.

  • Chapter 2 describes baseline energy costs and consumption in communities across the AkAES study area. Socioeconomic characteristics, including population trends and other factors that affect communities’ ability to pay for infrastructure, are also discussed. Estimates for investment needed to maintain the current state of energy systems in communities over next 20 years is provided in this chapter.
  • Chapter 3 investigates the factors that drive the cost of energy in communities—for both electricity and heat. The chapter follows the supply chain from crude oil to consumption to understand which factors have the most sway over the total cost consumers pay for energy.

Chapters 4, 5 and 6 describe and analyze factors that could help bring affordable energy to Alaska communities.

  • Chapter 4 explores the risks and barriers to project development, categorized by technology and phase. By planning for and mitigating these risks, communities’ and the State’s return on investment (ROI) can be increased.
  • Chapter 5 provides an overview and brief analysis of current and historical state energy programs to understand what has been effective to date in bringing affordable energy to communities.
  • Chapter 6 expands on the cost drivers in Chapter 3 to delve into infrastructure and non-infrastructure opportunities for reducing community energy costs.

Chapter 7 builds on the results of all previous chapters to propose a framework for statutory, regulatory and policy changes to bring more affordable energy to Alaska communities.

The entire report can be downloaded here:

AkAES Methodology, Findings, and Recommendations

Additional resources can be found in the sidebar entitled “Commissioned Reports”. There you will be able to find studies that were commissioned to support the AkAES project.

For more information, contact:

Neil McMahon 
Planning Manager
Tel: 907-771-3981 
Fax: 907-771-3044

Legislative and Media inquires regarding the AkAES should be directed to:

Katie Conway
Government Relations, Outreach/Efficiency  Manager
Tel: 907-771-3078 
Fax: 907-771-3044

              Join the AkAES Listserve for notification of meetings and milestones completed:




Commissioned Reports

The following research and analysis informed AkAES findings and recommendations:

 Report Title

 Report Author(s)


Energy Efficiency Program Evaluation and Financing Needs Assessment

Vermont Energy Investment Corporation; Cold Climate Housing Research Center

July 2016

LNG Feasibility for Alaska Affordable Energy Strategy Communities

Northern Economics

July 2016

Documentation of Alaska-Specific Technology Development Needs in support of the Alaska Affordable Energy Strategy

UAF Alaska Center for Energy & Power

June 2016

Rural Utility Financial Analysis

UAA Center for Economic Development

October 2016

Fuel Transportation Improvement Report

US Army Corps of Engineers, Alaska District

October  2016

Barriers and Opportunities for Private Investment in Rural Alaska Energy Projects 

UAF Alaska Center for Energy & Power

December 2016

Sustainable Utilities Study updates, utility structure analysis, and subsidy program analysis

UAA Institute of Social & Economic Research

January 2017

True Cost of Electricity & Bulk Fuel In Rural Alaska

UAA Institute of Social & Economic Research

October 2016

Energy Costs & Rural Alaska Out-migration

UAA Institute of Social & Economic Research

March 2017

Financial Benchmarking for Rural Alaska Electric Utilities

UAA Center for Economic Development

June 2017








Improving Access to Decision-Critical Information

Strategies deployed to increase access to affordable energy must be tailored to the specific resources, needs and capacity of the community and/or utility they are intended to benefit. In order to analyze the cost-effectiveness of various infrastructure improvements in a given community, AEA developed the Alaska Affordable Energy Model (AAEM) with the assistance of Geographic Information Network of Alaska (GINA). The community energy evaluation tool is accessible from: