Tetra Tech assisted the Kodiak Electric Association (KEA) in developing a small turbine wind power project on Kodiak Island, Alaska. The facility consists of three General Electric 1.5-megawatt wind turbines. The project site is on Pillar Mountain, which overlooks the City of Kodiak. Tetra Tech provided a full suite of consulting and construction services.

Developed to operate in conjunction with local hydroelectric generation, the Pillar Mountain wind energy project is an integral part of KEA’s goal of producing 95 percent of its energy with cost-effective renewable power by 2020.

The project presented a number of challenges unique to Alaska. It is in a sensitive wildlife area, and required significant assessment, planning, mitigation, and coordination. Tetra Tech provided narrative and engineering plans for wetland protection and on-site erosion and sediment control.

Since commissioning, Pillar Mountain wind turbines have met or exceeded electrical generation expectations, producing more than 22,500 kilowatt hours of electricity. Tetra Tech is participating in the planning process to add three more turbines to the Pillar Mountain wind farm.

Tetra Tech provided the following services:

  • Prepared a critical issues analysis report, which identified development challenges and recommended areas of further study
  • Prepared an engineering feasibility report addressing the issues of turbine transportation and construction
  • Prepared 404 permit submittal, which received prompt approval by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • Designed and implemented a year-long field study of avian use and performed post-construction monitoring
  • Conducted an on-site wetland delineation and prepared a wetland permit application
  • Performed road and turbine siting and mapping and turbine micrositing
  • Prepared engineering analyses and design drawings for civil, structural, and electrical scopes of work
  • Initiated construction budgets and schedules to ensure timely delivery during the 2008 and 2009 construction seasons
  • Self-performed the foundation construction and conduit and grounding activities
  • Used the talents of many local subcontractor and material suppliers


  • KEA’s Pillar Mountain Wind Energy Project was selected as the National Rural Electric Energy Cooperative 2009 Wind Cooperative of the Year
  • The Pillar Mountain Project was a runner-up for the Platts Global Energy Awards in 2009
  • The project was the subject of the Discovery Channel’s “Shades of Green” special feature