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Clean energy projects highlighted in Granholm’s Alaska tour

August 13, 2021 GMT

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm plans to spend two days in Alaska traveling with Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski to showcase what Granholm’s office calls the state’s status as “America’s living laboratory.”

The visit coincides with the recent passage of the bipartisan infrastructure deal and is intended to show how investments and research and development funding “will bring jobs and help build the state’s clean, secure energy future,” Granholm’s office said.

“America’s Last Frontier is leading the way to advance technologies that will make our clean energy transition possible,” Granholm said in a statement “I look forward to joining Senator Murkowski to witness this innovation.”

The visit starts Sunday in Fairbanks, where Granholm and Murkowski plan to tour the National Renewable Energy Lab’s Cold Climate Housing Research Center. The center’s work in training a local workforce to build and rapidly deploy shelter for climate-threatened communities in an effort to reduce the need for relocation will be highlighted.

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Also Sunday, they will tour the Permafrost Tunnel Research Facility, where scientists study the impact of thawing on above-ground structures. They also plan to attend the Chena Hot Springs Renewable Energy Fair, where they will give brief remarks before touring Chena Hot Springs.

On Monday, plans call for visiting the Alaska Center for Energy and Power at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, where researchers are developing ways to achieve 100% renewable power for rural villages.

Granholm and Murkowski will then fly to Anchorage and participate in a discussion with Malcolm Woolf, president of the National Hydropower Association.

The visit is set to conclude with a meeting with students and alumni of the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program at the University of Alaska Anchorage.