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Northern Mariana Islands   Northern Mariana Islands Profile

Territory Profile and Energy Estimates

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Quick Facts

  • The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) meets nearly all of its energy demand by importing petroleum products, including 22 million to 24 million gallons of diesel fuel annually to run the islands'  electricity generating plants.
  • Diesel fuel surcharges on electricity in the CNMI have decreased in recent years, as lower world petroleum prices have brought the surcharge down from 30 cents per kilowatthour in April 2014 to 15 cents in mid-2017.
  • The Commonwealth Utilities Corp., the CNMI's public utility,  is looking at long-term alternatives to petroleum-fired electricity generators, which are aging and cannot run at full capacity.
  • Active volcanoes make the CNMI–particularly the islands of Pagan and Saipan–unique in Micronesia in having significant geothermal energy potential.
  • The CNMI's renewable portfolio standard requires the islands to get 20% of their net electricity sales from renewable energy if cost-effective resources are available, but, so far, only small-scale wind and solar resources have been built, mostly at government and school facilities.

Last Updated: September 21, 2017