October is "National Energy Awareness Month," designated by a decree from the late president George Herbert Walker Bush in 1991. We at The Alaska Center believe that every month gives us reason to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy production, considering what is at stake without a rapid global transition to low-carbon energy sources. The recent storms that battered the Bering Sea and Norton Sound region point to the urgency. Energy awareness also saves homes and businesses money and creates local jobs.
Collective work to create a more energy-aware state includes new additions to our Solarize programs, celebrating the first deal under Anchorage's Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy program and CPACE's expansion to the Mat-Su Borough, helping steward public involvement in the Fairbanks Climate Action and Adaptation Plan.
Solarize Fairbanks facilitated two communities this season, University Heights and Denali, with 94kW purchased and over 16 homes and businesses solarized. That brings the initiative to just under a megawatt, rising at 893.35kW purchased and installed across the Interior. The team hosted community listening sessions during September to gain valuable feedback on evolving the Solarize model for 2023.
Solarize Mat Su held its first campaign this year! We facilitated programs in the Palmer and Sutton/Chickaloon communities. Installations are still underway, but at least 35 homes have Solarized. We will have an end-of-year celebration for those communities participating when installation season is over, expected in late October to early November.
Solarize Anchorage and Solarize Mat Su will start the 2023 season on October 6th with a kickoff webinar>>
Rachel Christensen and Chris Pike with The Alaska Center for Energy and Power will walk you through how your community can Solarize. Solarize Mat-Su will also be hosting an informational session in Talkeetna at the Denali Education Center on October 13th at 6:00 pm. We are currently planning many community events throughout October and November, so if you are interested in attending one, please head to our Facebook page to stay up to date!
The first Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy loan closed in Anchorage this fall. This program, adopted by municipal ordinance and authorized by state law, attaches an energy efficiency or renewable energy project loan to a property instead of an individual and allows the owner to pay the loan back as a line on their property tax bill. The project's energy savings are often equal to or greater than the annual loan repayment charge, making the program cash neutral. The Mat-Su Borough Assembly is currently considering adopting CPACE. Our work hosting the Alaska Municipal Climate Network has helped local government leaders connect on policies, including CPACE, which we hope to see expand to local governments statewide.
Climate Action starts at home, the individual business, and the local government level. We are pleased to support the creation of a Climate Action and Adaptation Plan (CAAP) within the Fairbanks North Star Borough. Throughout this fall, our Interior Community Organizing Manager, Alyssa Quintyne, along with other The Alaska Center staff, will be working with Fairbanks Climate Action Coalition and other community leaders to ensure that the public has all of the tools they need to support the creation of a CAAP to guide energy decisions at the borough. Find more information, meeting dates, and links to the draft CAAP visioning document here>>
Throughout October and the rest of 2022, The Alaska Center will be focused on moving the ball forward on energy, with energy.
Thank you. Have a restorative energy weekend.
-The Alaska Center Team
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