Healy Power Plant

From Global Energy Monitor

Healy Power Plant is a 90.0-megawatt (MW) lignite coal-fired power station owned and operated by the Golden Valley Electric Association near Healy, Alaska.


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Plant Data

  • Owner: Golden Valley Electric Association
  • Parent Company: Golden Valley Electric Association
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 90.0 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: Unit 1: 28.0 MW (1967), Unit 2: 62.0 MW (1998)
  • Location: 2.5 Mile Healy Spur Rd., Healy, AK 99743
  • GPS Coordinates: 63.854972, -148.950891
  • Technology: Subcritical
  • Coal type: Lignite
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source: Usibelli Coal Mine ( Usibelli Coal Mine Inc)[1]
  • Number of Employees:
  • Unit Retirements:

Emissions Data

  • CO2 Emissions: 297,372 tons (2006)
  • SO2 Emissions: 470 tons (2002)
  • SO2 Emissions per MWh: 4.28 lb/MWh
  • NOx Emissions: 380 tons (2002)
  • Mercury Emissions:


The initial plant was 28 MW and began operating in 1967. A second 50 MW unit of $300 million was built in 1997. The new unit - known as Healy Unit 2 or the Healy Clean Coal Project - was part of a U.S. Department of Energy program to advance experimental coal-burning technology, but was plagued by safety and reliability problems during two years of sporadic use (1998-99). Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) received permission from the Environmental Protection Agency in 2012 to restart the plant, and the utility acquired Healy Unit 2 the following year from the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority for about $44 million.[2] Healy Unit 2 began operating in May 2015, for the first time since 1999.[3]

Only two days after passing its commissioning test in March 2016, a “mill puff explosion” shut the plant down. As work crews began ramping the plant up to go online once more, a second mill puff explosion shut the plant down again in November 2016. The plant was determined to be in need of US$20 million in modifications. The plant is planned to be operational again in July 2018.[4] It returned to operation in September 2018.[5]

Construction Financing for Healy 2

The construction of Healy 2 was financed by the Department Of Energy ($120 million), Alaska Legislature ($25 million), Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA) ($150 million), and Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) & Usibelli Coal Mine ($10 million plus in-kind contributions).[6]

Opposition to Healy Plant

In March 2010, anti-coal groups targeted Golden Valley Electric Association's plan to restart an inactive Healy Power Plant but would have to go into debt as a result. The GVEA Ratepayers Alliance stated in response that the "black hole" for energy customers' money and opposed the plant's reopening.[7]

Articles and Resources


  1. "EIA 923 March 2020" EIA 923 2020.
  2. "Healy Clean Coal Plant" Golden Valley Electric Association website, August 2009
  3. Jeff Richardson,"Healy power plant online for first time since 1999," News Miner, May 29, 2015
  4. Kevin Baird, "GVEA says Healy 2 power plant should be ready in 2018," News Miner, Sep 6, 2017
  5. "GVEA declares Healy 2 power plant operational," Alaska Public Media, September 14, 2018
  6. "Healy Unit 2 (HCCP)". GVEA. Retrieved 2020-12-16.
  7. "Anti-coal groups target Healy plant's debt" Associated Press, March 26, 2010.

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