Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966

 
 

By Bill Kurz 

LNG better option than hydro power

 


As an observer at last week’s Connelly Lake hydro project meeting, it quickly became obvious that it’s simply not cost effective to build that project. It also became obvious that Schubee Lake would be way too expensive.

A very rough estimate for Connelly Lake is $34 to $40 million. That’s for someplace between five and six megawatts of power. Schubee Lake, depending on how it’s done, would cost over $44 million. That is simply outrageous. At best, these would be eight years before they produce electric.

As I said at the Connelly Lake meeting, I fully support hydro but these are too expensive. I have advertisements for liquid natural gas (LNG) power plants: New 14.3 megawatts for $5.9 million, used 5.2 megawatts for $1.5 million. Cost per megawatt is much less and can be on line in much less time.

The Kitimat, B.C. LNG plant is due to be on line by the end of 2014, so getting gas will be little over half way to Seattle. Some of that gas will come to Haines anyway to supply mines in Yukon. According to Fred Grey at the last port development committee meeting, electric power from gas costs about 11 cents per kilowatt.

A power station located at the tank farm property would be close to the cable from Skagway, close to the cables that used to run to Chilkoot Lumber’s power house. Also close to Lutak dock for gas supply. LNG is proven, very low-emission, reliable, cost-effective power.