Today, the State Senate unanimously passed Senate Bill 23, supporting the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA) in developing a financial package for low interest loans to build an LNG facility on the North Slope and a distribution system for natural gas in Fairbanks and surrounding communities.
Supporters like Senator Click Bishop of Fairbanks said the high cost of energy for his city are “crippling the economy” and driving away businesses and residents.
He said SB23 would “trigger a ripple effect of boosting the economy while creating jobs” and clear the infamously unhealthy Fairbanks air.
Funding for the project would be through a combination of AIDEA bonds, general funds and natural gas storage credits, which were passed last year by the Legislature.
Senators estimate the project will be functioning by mid-to-late 2015 and reduce Fairbanks heating costs by around 40 percent.
Senate Bill 23 now heads to the House for further consideration.