Power The Future Energy Hour Recap: Dr. Nick Begich

Power The Future Energy Hour Recap: Dr. Nick Begich

August 5, 2020

Every Tuesday night from 5:00-6:00 PM local time, Alaska State Director Rick Whitbeck hosts the “Power The Future Energy Hour” on KNVT (92.5 FM, 1020 AM and online at 1020KVNT.com).  The show (also replayed during the same hour on Saturday night) is heard throughout Southcentral Alaska communities, and acts as a recap of Power The Future activities in Alaska, as well as an opportunity to hear from various members of Alaska’s energy community.

Since the show’s inception in January 2018, it has had dozens of guests, including members of Congress, Alaska’s Governor, Lt. Governor, State Commissioners and Deputy Commissioners, members of the Governor’s leadership team, executives from organizations throughout Alaska who fight for jobs, opportunities and progress alongside us (The Alaska Support Industry Alliance, Resource Development Council, Alaska Oil & Gas Association, Alaska Miners Association and others), state legislators from both parties who have a role in energy policy as part of their legislative duties and executives from many of Alaska’s leading resource development projects (both current and potential).

This week, we had our first three-segment guest in show history!  Dr. Nick Begich is the oldest son of former US Senator Nick Begich, and brother to ultra-Liberal politicos Tom (an Alaska state Senator) and Mark (former Anchorage Mayor and US Senator himself).  Dr. Begich has an exceptionally different political bent from his brothers, and is unabashedly pro-responsible development, even owning a small mining project in rural Alaska.

The first segment focused on how railroads into many of Alaska’s mining districts would allow mining firms to diffuse some of the rhetoric thrown their way by extremist-level environmental organizations and individuals.  We discussed the specifics around the Ambler mining district in Northwest Alaska, as well as how the Alberta-to-Alaska Railway project could help monetize the deep-water port at Point Mackenzie.  That specific project would allow for manufacturing opportunities in Alaska to grow, and provide an alternative to current southbound transport options.

The second segment was spent discussing mining opportunities across the state that are significant, but not in the news as much as Pebble or Donlin.  The UCore, Palmer, Johnson and Graphite One deposits were highlighted, and Dr. Begich’s insight on the revenue, jobs and global market potential for each was noted.

The last segment was a hodge-podge of topics, ranging from the Red Dog mine and its infrastructure projects that stemmed from the mine’s development to the abilities for many of these projects to provide generational employment for regional residents, thereby mitigating the out-migration to larger cities.

Guests in upcoming weeks will include lawmakers, industry executives and senior-level government officials, as well as experts on Alaska’s resource economy and our budget.

If you’re not listening to the show live, feel free to catch the replay on SoundCloud.  You can catch this week’s show here.  Feel free to reach out to Rick Whitbeck at Rick@PowerTheFuture.com if you have ideas for future shows!