Flipping the Switch on Arctic Energy

Electric conversations are the norm for SEARCH’s Arctic Energy Synthesis Group. Zooming in from across the country, team members crackle with enthusiasm as meeting discussions bounce from sustainable power financing in rural Alaska to achieving equitable energy transitions for communities across the circumpolar north. The experts at work offer a taste of the diversity of perspectives that tackling Arctic energy demands. Matt Heavner—a climate, Arctic, and clean energy expert with experience working for the Department of Energy and Los Alamos National Laboratory—and Elizabeth “Liz” Qaulluq Cravalho—a Kotzebue native and Vice President of Lands at NANA—exemplify that. One moment, Matt details the economic implications of rural Alaskan energy policy; the next, Qaulluq tells the story of Shungnak, a primarily Alaska Native community that labored to save their harvested subsistence foods during an extended power outage while traditional means of preservation via natural infrastructure dwindle. Matt, Qaulluq, and more continue to harness the power of these meetings of minds to synthesize new understandings for the future of energy in the Arctic. Listen to Matt speak a bit more about SEARCH’s work in progress on sustainable Arctic energy.