Warren Buffett major investors land in Juneau, talk with governor about Alaska energy potential - Must Read Alaska
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Wednesday, June 16, 2021
HomeThe 907Warren Buffett major investors land in Juneau, talk with governor about Alaska energy potential

Warren Buffett major investors land in Juneau, talk with governor about Alaska energy potential

Berkshire Hathaway executives flew into Juneau to scout the state for investment potential for energy, logistics, ports, and the cargo hub of the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. They met with Gov. Mike Dunleavy in Juneau on Tuesday. The Dunleavy Administration has been inviting private capital investment in Alaska, and investment houses are flush with cash right now.

Berkshire Hathaway, founded by Warren Buffett, is one of the most reputable companies in the world with one of the strongest balance sheets. It has $150 billion in cash, twice the size of the Alaska Permanent Fund.

For an apex investor to come to Alaska and meet with the governor, something had to have happened. As it turns out, Gov. Dunleavy started the conversation with Buffett a year ago in a letter he sent inviting Warren or his lieutenants to come learn about Alaska, and about potential for renewable energy investments in Alaska.

Berkshire Hathaway Energy in recent years expanded into solar, wind hydro, and geothermal projects and has one of the largest renewable energy portfolios in the U.S.

Renewables in Alaska are an untapped potential, including the newer technology of “pumped hydro,” which is an ability to use excess wind electricity to reverse-pump water back into a reservoir to store for later use as hydro energy when the wind dies down. This would open up a whole new world for smaller communities shackled with higher energy costs, sources say.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Ya, him & gates are building a nuclear plant in wyoming too, so they need some clean carbon points to offset the petroleum investments they have going already.

  • Warren Buffett shut down the keystone pipeline so his trains can keep shipping the oil instead of the pipe line. He is nothing but a bane for Alaskan energy. He will block any new developments in our oil industry. He only has Berkshire Hathaway Inc. interests in mind not Alaskans. He has connections to China, globalism and communism. He is not a good man.

  • Pumped Hydro Storage is not “new”, it’s a century old and currently comprises ~95% of the world’s energy storage. Alaska is a great place for PSH with all our mountains and water.

  • He’ll be in renewables until those Treasury checks run out.

  • So if you have wind power and you have a reservoir, you can use wind generated electricity to pump water back into a resevoir? Is this more efficient than storing excess power in batteries? Will the water pumped back into the reservoir produce as much, or more, electricity than the amount used to pump it into the reservoir?
    Seems kinda pipe dreamy!

    • This only makes sense when that energy from wind is not needed. No brainer really but there is some expense so the idea has to make sense over a long period to recover that expense.

  • Any scheme for storing excess electricity energy works only as long as the demand for electricity is less than wind generator/storage capacity. Build one for a bush community, reducing the cost for the end users, and they will start buying electric heaters and other electricity sucking devices … increasing demand and reducing wind generator/storage efficiency.
    It’s own failure is built in. Diesel generators will still be needed, and even more because the initial lower cost of electricity will automatically increase demand, and the high maintenance cost of the wind generators will suck up all possible efficiencies. It takes 16 times more man hours per kilowatt than conventional means.
    There are a few “little” details about wind and solar the Greenies are conveniently omitting.

  • Right. Same “investors” who hate the keystone pipeline and had it closed down so oil had to be transported on warren buffet owned trains. No trust in them.

  • Right. Same “investors” who hate the keystone pipeline and had it closed down so oil had to be transported on warren buffet owned trains. No trust in them.

    Duplicate comment? More bugs in the site and it needs tweeking..

  • Actually, the ‘Greenies’ are already designing for an expected adoption of 100% electric heat and transportation. Also, they’re very cognizant of O & M expenses as compared to fuel costs across Alaska, as well as many “little” details about the massive other costs of diesel in rural Alaska that most oil promoters seem to always conveniently omit.

  • Alaska and ordinary Alaskans do reveal they have exceptional potential. But! Like a remarkable woman showing great potential, she keeps getting involved with abusive partners who only exploit her. Instead of building up Alaska, people come here to use and abuse the place and peoples.

  • Maybe someone in Juneau will bring up the potential for BNSF to make a fortune in Alaska building a reailroad to the west coast of Alaska, with a spur up to Red Dog and another up to Ambler. Or put the railroad to Red Dog first, with immediate return on investment, then a spur to Ambler to allow fo the immediate opening of the mine there. Then, drop down to Kotzebue. Finally, down to Nome to support the DOD deep water arctic port they want to build there. Return on investment would be about 5-6 years. Buffett owns Brlington Northern Sante Fe railroad and could supply the power and construction cars out of his inventory. Berkshire Hathaway, Burlington Northern Santa Fe, LLC. This would do more for Alaska than any other investment they could make, with a quicker return on investment.

  • Hope the AEDF or Permanent Fund doesn’t get sucked into this scheme…

    “Despite being famous for touting the idea that the rich don’t pay their fair share of taxes, investor Warren Buffet seems to be perfectly fine with receiving tax breaks for making investments in Big Wind. “I will do anything that is basically covered by the law to reduce Berkshire’s tax rate,” Buffet told an audience in Omaha, Nebraska recently. “For example, on wind energy, we get a tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms. That’s the only reason to build them. They don’t make sense without the tax credit.”

    But while the wind production tax credit may be great for Buffet’s bottom line, it’s harmful for American taxpayers and energy consumers.

  • Wait don’t those trains, run on oil fuel, what about that private plane, they flew on, more oil
    Yes they will stop all drilling in Alaska. Kick them out of Alaska

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