Thursday, June 9, 2016

USA, Alaska: Pilgrim Hot Springs Geothermal Waters to be Used in Direct Use Project

Unaatuq Breaks Ground on Pilgrim Hot Springs Development (KNOM)

Mountain view at Pilgrim Hot Springs.
(Photo: Maddie Winchester, KNOM)
Starting this summer, an abandoned hot springs in the heart of western Alaska will go from a deteriorating historical site to an operational community garden. At least that’s the vision of Unaatuq, LLC, a consortium of seven regional organizations that owns the Pilgrim Hot Springs property.

The Alaska Center for Energy and Power (ACEP) works closely with Unaatuq. It helped secure a “Conservation Innovation” grant through the National Resource Conservation Service to help fund the Pilgrim Project. Research Engineer Chris Pike sees a connection between the grant’s energy focus and growing food.

“One of the things that we really want to do is use that geothermal energy that’s at Pilgrim Hot Springs to grow vegetables,” said Pike. “And then food is a way to export energy. We always think of electricity and heat, but food is just as much of a need.”

ACEP has determined that the Pilgrim Hot Springs resource should be capable of sustainably generating 2 MW of electric power, which could be used locally or delivered to Nome or other nearby loads via the construction of a power line.

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