USDA awards $5.6M in energy grants

Wind turbines in Bethel, Alaska. (Photo by Andrea Pokrzywinski)

Wind turbines in Bethel, Alaska. (Photo by Andrea Pokrzywinski)

Several Western Alaska communities could see lower energy costs after federal grants have been distributed.

KNOM reports the U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded $5.6 million for the communities.

The Yukon Delta community of Kipnuk will get the biggest chunk, nearly $3 million. Kipnuk Utility Manager Sam Carl says the money will go for three wind turbines and about 100 thermal stoves in the community about 100 miles southwest of Bethel.

Noatak, which is located nearly 600 miles north of Kipnuk, will get more than $350,000 to replace a diesel engine generator.

The remaining funds will go to the Denali Commission for use in a several communities.