Napakiak Intertie

Project Overview

Napakiak is on the north bank of the Kuskokwim River, 15 miles southwest of Bethel. It is located on an island between the Kuskokwim River and Johnson's Slough. It lies 407 miles west of Anchorage. The community lies at approximately 60.696670° North Latitude and -161.951940° West Longitude. (Sec. 17, T007N, R072W, Seward Meridian.) Napakiak is located in the Bethel Recording District. The area encompasses 4.7 sq. miles of land and 0.3 sq. miles of water. Napakiak is influenced by storms in the Bering Sea and also by inland continental weather.
Average annual precipitation is 16 inches, with 50 inches of snowfall. Summer high temperatures average 59 to 62 °F, and winter highs average 11 to 19 °F. Extremes from 86 to -46 °F have been recorded. The Kuskokwim River is typically ice-free from June through October.


Setting poles for new intertie

Image Courtesy of Denali Commission


The Napakiak-Bethel Intertie is a 10.5 mile medium voltage line between Napakiak and Bethel. The original intertie was built in 1980 as a Single Wire Ground Return (SWGR) demonstration project. This line allowed Napakiak Ircinraq Power Company (NIPC) to buy electricity from the Bethel Utility. The existing line has deteriorated resulting in frequent blackouts. It requires expensive emergency response in remote areas for repair. The new project is a full replacement which includes pile foundation supported poles, three-phase line, new transformers, and related equipment.

The Grantee was Napakiak Ircinraq Power Company (NIPC), which owns and operates the electric utility. Alaska Energy & Engineering was the design team. Construction of the powerline intertie started January 2009 and was substantially completed in April 2009 and put into use.

To learn more about the project, go here.


The new line to Nepakiak

Image Courtesy of Denali Commission


A major environmental concern was preventing damage to the tundra. The contractor could only begin work once the tundra was frozen and had to be off the tundra when it began to thaw. Remote isolated conditions, equipment malfunctions and weather were formidable obstacles the contractor successfully overcame resulting in a successful project.

Data and Analysis

The new intertie is safe and reliable, meeting current regulatory requirements.

The intertie was conveyed to the Napakiak Ircinraq Power Company at the completion of the project.


The Project was funded with grants from the Denali Commission, the U.S. Department of Agriculture - Rural Utility System and funding from the State of Alaska.

$149,813.20 of the funding came from the Denali Commission and $2,982,944.04 came from other sources.

Links, Resources, and Documents

Share this page on Facebook! Facebook

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License