Embracing renewable energy technology and energy-efficient practices that reduce fossil fuel consumption is critical to building a resilient Southeast where people and place can thrive for generations to come. The move toward electrification can help us build a more sustainable world while benefiting multiple areas of society — the health of the environment will improve when we burn fewer fossil fuels, consumers will gain access to more reliable and affordable energy systems, and electric utilities will receive more demand for their product. This movement away from fossil fuels is well underway in Southeast Alaska — the region receives 95% of its electricity from hydropower, making it a national leader in renewable energy. However, barriers remain, both for the distribution of renewable energy throughout the region (most hydropower generation is concentrated in Juneau, Ketchikan, and Sitka), and for households, organizations, and businesses that want to switch to clean energy technologies.
The programs offered in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) — a piece of federal legislation signed in 2022 — expand access to clean energy and energy efficiency measures and can financially benefit households.