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         Municipality of Anchorage

 About ML&P

Municipal Light & Power

Utility Profile – 2014

Municipal Light & Power provides electric utility service to commercial, university and medical customers in the downtown and midtown business districts as well as industrial loads in the Ship Creek and port areas. In addition, it serves residential customers in some of Anchorage ’s oldest neighborhoods in its roughly 20-square-mile area. ML&P powers Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and sells electricity to other Railbelt utilities. The utility has a one-third working interest in the Beluga River Unit gas field, making it one of the only vertically integrated natural-gas-fired utilities on the West Coast.

ML&P generates, transmits and distributes electric power. ML&P operates two thermal generation plants and is currently building a new plant that will be one of the world’s most energy-efficient thermal generation plants in the world. The Hank Nikkels Power Plant 1 is located northeast of downtown in Anchorage . The George M. Sullivan Plant is located in east Anchorage . The new plant expansion project at Plant 2 will provide 120 megawatts when complete in 2016. ML&P also partnered with Chugach Electric on the Southcentral Power Project. The 183-megawatt natural-gas-fired, combined-cycle plant located on Chugach’s headquarters complex near Minnesota Drive and International Airport Road went into service on Jan. 31, 2013. ML&P’s 30 percent share of SPP provides ML&P customers with about 55 megawatts. ML&P also owns 53.33 percent of and operates the Eklutna Hydroelectric Project and has rights to 25.9 percent of the 120-megawatt Bradley Lake Hydroelectric Project. ML&P is the south-end controller of the Anchorage-Fairbanks Intertie.

 

ML&P facts at a glance

Average number of customers 

30,767
Residential   24,439
Commercial   6,328

Total power generated/purchased

 867,146 MWh
ML&P generated 786,218 MWh
Purchased from Bradley Lake  80,928 MWh

Total generation capacity 

379.2 MW (Base ISO)
- Hank Nikkels Power Plant 1 88.4 MW (Base ISO)
- George M. Sullivan Power Plant 2 219.5 MW (Base ISO)
- Eklutna Hydroelectric Power Plant 23.7 MW (Base ISO)

Peak Demand

171 MW

Transmission/Distribution System

 
-Underground distribution 248 miles
 -Overhead distribution  123 miles 
-Number of street lights  3,911

 

Organization
ML&P has one administrative and six operating divisions: Generation and Power Management; Operations; Finance; Systems and Communications; Customer Service; Engineering; and Administration. Managers for each of the divisions report directly to the General Manager. 

 

General Manager & Chief Operating Officer: Mark A. Johnston (Acting)

Chief Financial Officer: Mark A. Johnston

 

Division Managers

Administration: Patsy Gunn   

Customer Service: Beverly Jones

Engineering: Mio Johnson

Generation/Power Management: Eugene Ori/Acting

Operations: Greg Eidam

Systems & Communications: Terrance Pearson

Finance Division/Regulatory: Mark Johnston

Administrative Division/Environmental: Lena Saville

Administrative Division/Public Relations: Julie Harris/ Acting

Administration Division/Safety: Vincent Perez

ML&P had 210 regular and 11 temporary employees on December 31, 2013. 

 

ML&P Electric Commission
Judith Brady, Chair

Treg Taylor, Vice-Chair

Johnny O. Gibbons

Dale Nelson

 

Governance

ML&P is owned by the Municipality of Anchorage , which purchased its distribution system from the privately owned Anchorage Power & Light Co. in 1932. Since that time, ML&P has grown to include production and transmission as well as upgraded and expanded distribution. ML&P operations are funded through its rate-paying customers and gas sales. As owner, MOA receives millions of dollars each year from ML&P in the form of a dividend and gross receipts tax. Assembly Ordinance 2011-114 re-established ML&P’s seven-member Commission in the fall of 2011 with the repeal of Anchorage Municipal Code Title 32. Between September 2008 and November 2011, ML&P was governed and managed by a nine-member Board of Directors.

 

Regulation

ML&P is subject to the Regulatory Commission of Alaska. The RCA is made up of five members appointed by the governor to six-year, staggered terms. They are confirmed by the Alaska Legislature. RCA regulations encompass service-area definition, tariff rules and regulations, service quality criteria and establishment of rates and charges.

 

Rates & reliability

ML&P rates are some of the lowest in Alaska and are competitive nationally. ML&P’s 10-year reliability record, as determined by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, shows it provides continuous service to customers 99.99 percent of the time. ML&P employees take great pride in maintaining the “4-9’s of reliability.”

 

History

The history of ML&P is closely linked with the history and development of Anchorage . Anchorage was a small tent city in the wilderness when the Alaska Engineering Commission initiated electrical service in Anchorage in 1916. The city operated the electrical-distribution system under a lease agreement, first with the AEC and later with the Alaska Railroad. This lease agreement continued until 1932 when the city bought the electrical-distribution system for $11,351. A small steam plant and diesel power generators supplied Anchorage with electricity until 1929. That year, the privately owned Anchorage Power & Light Co. began supplying electricity from a hydroelectric power plant on the Eklutna River , 40 miles northeast of Anchorage .

In 1943, the city acquired the Eklutna plant from AP&L. In 1955, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation completed construction of a new, larger plant on the Eklutna River . The city contracted for 16,000 kilowatts of generating capacity from that plant and “little” Eklutna was transferred to the federal government. In 1969, ML&P, Chugach Electric and the Matanuska Electric associations jointly took ownership of the Eklutna Hydroelectric Plant. In the mid-1940s, Anchorage ’s next major power source sailed into the port. Sacketts Harbor was a 10,000-ton T2 tanker that had broken up in the Aleutian Islands . The ship’s drive was electric, so Anchorage purchased it to generate electricity.

Between 1962 and 1984, ML&P installed seven turbine-generating units fired by natural gas and one heat-recovery, steam-turbine generating unit. Five of the seven turbines have dual fuel capability, which enhances ML&P’s reliability in the event of disruption of the natural gas transportation system.

In 2005 a more efficient replacement for the original Unit 3 at Plant 1 was installed and the old unit 3 was retired. In 2011, contractors broke ground on the Southcentral Power Project on behalf of ML&P and Chugach Electric. The 183MW plant came under utility control on Jan. 31, 2013. Under the terms of an agreement between the two utilities, Chugach operates the plant.

 

Powering generations

ML&P continues to invest in clean, efficient energy into the next generation. Investment includes new generation assets at SPP and Plant 2, Beluga River Unit upgrades, distribution system improvements and other capital projects, including construction of Plant 2A, the generation expansion project at the George M. Sullivan Plant 2. When complete in 2016, the new plant will provide 120 megawatts of combined-cycle natural-gas-fired generation. The plant is 35 percent more energy efficient than ML&P’s current base load turbines and emits 97 percent less nitrogen oxides, 80 percent less carbon monoxide and about 30 percent less carbon dioxide. Because the plant is collocated with the city’s water supply, ML&P can achieve close to 70 percent efficiencies, making the thermal- generation plant one of the world’s most energy-efficient. Heating city water has other benefits to the community, including reduced system maintenance costs due to water pipe freeze-ups and significantly reduced emissions.

 
 

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