Today at the Alaska Sustainable Energy Conference, the Office of Governor Mike Dunleavy released “The Alaska Standard”, an inaugural Sustainability Report that documents the State’s history of responsible resource development.
“Alaskans know that we’ve been doing resource development better than anyone since statehood by following our Constitutional mandates to develop our resources for the maximum benefit of our people, adhere to the sustained yield principle, and to safeguard the public interest,” said Governor Mike Dunleavy. “However, for far too long we’ve allowed our story to be told by others, often to the detriment of our ability to develop those resources. This report allows us to tell our story to the world, and demonstrate that the standards ratified by our people at statehood and put into action since then have set the bar for best practices that should be adopted across the globe.
“From our legacy resource industries that will sustain us for decades to come, to our investments in renewables and emerging energy technologies, we want the world to know that Alaska is the best place on the planet to do business that strikes the right balance between what’s best for both people and our environment.”
“The Alaska Standard” was produced by Bridge House Advisors under a contract with the Office of the Governor and includes contributions by multiple state agencies and corporations, the University of Alaska, and independent stakeholder groups including the ANCSA Regional Association and the Voice of the Arctic Iñupiat. Information in the report is documented through more than 130 citations from public sources.
Bridge House Advisors is an ESG and sustainability consulting firm headquartered in Chicago. Founded in 2017, Bridge House has more than 50 technical experts from varied backgrounds with extensive and varied environmental and sustainability experience.
“In my opinion, for the last 6+ decades, the State of Alaska has demonstrated the spirit and intent of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the State and its people are uniquely positioned to lead on the global energy transition,” said Jeff Gibbons, Chief Growth Officer of Bridge House Advisors.
The report covers Alaska’s history of resource development since statehood and documents how this development has benefited the people of Alaska first and foremost through state services, infrastructure, jobs and economic opportunities, reduced poverty rates, increased lifespans, and nearly $30 billion in Permanent Fund Dividend distributions since 1982.
“Alaska Native corporations steward and sustain lands for subsistence use as well as resource development that helps our state and its people,” said ANCSA Regional Association President Kim Reitmeier. “Alaska Native people garner strength, purpose and a connection to our history through our lands. It allows a sense of place and a tie to our ancestors that will never be broken.”
The report also highlights the work of the Alaska Energy Authority to reduce the cost of energy and displace diesel fuel in communities off the main power grids through decades of work in energy efficiency and renewable power projects.
“The Alaska Energy Authority has a proven track record of increasing the reliability and resiliency of energy in communities across Alaska. Throughout our 47-year history, AEA has collaborated with local and regional partners to implement innovative energy solutions that positively affect rural and urban Alaskans,” said AEA Executive Director Curtis W. Thayer. “During the last four years, the State has invested heavily in renewable energy, including hydropower, solar, and wind, as well as looking at emerging technologies such as hydrogen and micronuclear.
“By accelerating the transition to renewable energy, Alaska is positioning itself to provide long-term, affordable, and secure energy, while creating new jobs for the evolving sustainable economy.”
Click here to view the report online.
One statistic was clarified in the digital version available for download and the print version distributed this morning at the Alaska Sustainable Energy Conference. On page 10, the digital version was clarified to reflect that approximately 35 percent of employees at Alaska Native Regional Corporations are Alaska Natives.