Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy today signed Administrative Order No. 340 creating the Office of Energy Innovation to address the evolving energy needs of Alaska. The A.O. is issued amid recent destabilizing global events that have illustrated the importance of energy independence and with recognition of the positive economic impacts that come from domestic energy production. The Office of Energy Innovation, operating within the Office of the Governor, will develop policies to support the centralization of the state’s efforts to provide safe, sustainable, affordable, and reliable energy resources for all Alaskans.
The Office of Energy Innovation is formed with the purpose of developing policies that enable Alaska to capitalize on its vast energy potential to lower cost of energy and enhance the stability of energy delivered to Alaskans; to collaborate with public and private institutions to develop pragmatic, market-driven solutions; to assist all communities in accessing innovative technology and necessary funding to secure low cost reliable energy; and support efforts that enhance Alaska’s role in a national clean energy future through the development of a strong and responsible critical minerals mining program and the investment in emerging energy technologies.
“Alaska is an energy giant in all its forms. We’ll continue to be an oil and gas giant, but we are all in for every form of energy – wind, solar, hydro, tidal, geothermal, micronuclear, and hydrogen. The Office of Energy Innovation will coordinate this pursuit of sustainable, dependable, and affordable energy,” said Governor Mike Dunleavy. “From AEA’s electric vehicle charging station plan to the U.S. Air Force this week releasing a RFP for the Eielson Air Force Base micro-reactor pilot program, Alaska has seen a number of exciting developments recently. This is an exciting time for energy and the Office of Energy Innovation will make sure we don’t miss a single opportunity to support Alaska’s energy independence.”
Governor Dunleavy announced the Office of Energy Innovation at Alaska Energy Authority (AEA) in Anchorage, alongside DNR Acting Commissioner Akis Gialopsos, AEA Executive Director Curtis Thayer, John Burns, president & CEO of Golden Valley Electric Association, Tony Izzo, chief executive officer of Matanuska Electric Association, Gwen Holdmann, associate vice chancellor of University of Alaska, Frank Richards, president of Alaska Gasline Development Corporation.
“Alaskans need energy supplies that are stable and secure,” said acting DNR Commissioner Akis Gialopsos. “A coordinated effort under Governor Dunleavy’s Office is a tremendous step forward that focuses agencies’ efforts on Alaska becoming a leader in both carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) and building the critical minerals of this state and nation.”
“As the State’s energy office, we are committed to ensuring that all Alaskans have access to safe, reliable, affordable energy,” said Curtis W. Thayer, AEA Executive Director. “This Administrative Order builds on and reaffirms the work that the State of Alaska has already undertaken with our partners here today, and will contribute to economic growth and job creation, as we accelerate our transition to a clean energy economy.”
“Alaska has tremendous capacity to produce clean and affordable hydrogen in the form of ammonia to meet the growing demand from Alaskans and world markets. The Alaska LNG project can deliver North Slope natural gas to re-start existing and jump start future ammonia production in Nikiski,” said Frank Richards, AGDC President. “Governor Dunleavy’s new Office of Energy Innovation will foster vital collaboration between numerous Alaska stakeholders to craft a versatile and innovative energy future for Alaska and the nations around the world who look to us for energy abundance and security.”
“Safe, reliable, affordable and sustainable energy is critical to Alaska’s economic and social viability,” said John Burns, Golden Valley Electric Association President. “The Office of Energy Innovation will ensure focused coordination and collaboration amongst all stakeholders to leverage and maximize Alaska’s abundant natural resources and state and federal funding opportunities to positively transform Alaska’s energy future.”
“We stand at the crossroads of a pivotal moment for the future of energy in the State,” said Tony Izzo, CEO of Matanuska Electric Association. “MEA is united with the other interconnected Railbelt utilities in our commitment to work with the Governor, legislature and other stakeholders to be a catalyst for a secure, clean and diverse energy mix that can drive economic growth and a vibrant Alaska.”
“Microreactors and modular nuclear reactors are fast approaching market readiness, and with the planned project at Eielson AFB in 2027 Alaska is poised to be an early adopter of this emerging technology,” said Gwen Holdmann, UAF Associate Vice Chancellor. “With this A.O., I am excited to see the Dunleavy administration pull together numerous ongoing and independent activities related to energy planning that impact the future of Alaska. Energy security and planning is an issue that impacts all Alaskans, whether as individuals dependent on a reliable source of energy for electricity and to heat our homes, or as a means to power our state’s economy today, and well into the future.”
The A.O. takes effect immediately and will utilize existing personnel and resources within the Office of the Governor.