Alaska Railbelt Transmission LLC, or ART, an electricity transmission company newly formed by some of the Alaska Railbelt electric utilities and the American Transmission Co., has filed an application for a certificate of public convenience and necessity with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska. The idea is that the new company will plan, operate, maintain, upgrade and finance the electricity transmission network that spans the Railbelt region. The network is owned by six separate Railbelt electric utilities and the state of Alaska: Currently each utility manages and operates its own sector of the system.
ART told the commission that it has been formed by Homer Electric Association, Municipal Light & Power, Golden Valley Electric Association, the City of Seward and ATC. Chugach Electric Association and Matanuska Electric Association have also been involved in the process leading to the CPCN application. Chugach Electric is still conducting due diligence prior to seeking board approval for its participation in the new company. Matanuska Electric Association told the commission that it is still conducting its due diligence of the ART concept and that it has some "significant areas of concern."
The ART formation comes as part of a multiyear effort, encouraged by the RCA, for the utilities to take a more unified approach to the management and operation of the Railbelt electrical system.
- ALAN BAILEY
See story in March 3 issue of Petroleum News, available online Friday, March 1, at www.PetroleumNews.com
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