October 11, 2018 Read More →

Hawaiian Electric plans record solar additions, and storage too

Pacific Business News:

Honolulu-based utility Hawaiian Electric said on Tuesday it has selected seven solar-plus-storage projects for the largest infusion of renewable energy in state history. Once contract negotiations have been finalized, the seven projects are expected to produce approximately 260 megawatts of solar energy on Oahu, Maui and the Big Island.

Each of the projects will include an energy storage component that will capture excess energy that can be used in the evening or during other times when the sun isn’t shining, the utility said.

“These large-scale solar and battery projects will accelerate our renewable energy drive at some of the lowest prices we’ve seen to date,” Shelee Kimura, Hawaiian Electric’s senior vice president of business development and strategic planning, said in a prepared statement. “With support from our communities, these projects will reduce our reliance on fossil fuel and cut greenhouse gas emissions while benefiting all with low-cost renewable energy.” 

The seven projects, which are still subject to approval by the state Public Utilities Commission, will help displace a further 1.2 million barrels of fossil fuel per year.

Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light said they have already more than 500 MW of renewable energy under contract. This is in addition to nearly 80,000 private rooftop solar systems in operation. The seven projects will be spread out across the utility’s service territory, with three projects on Oahu, two on Maui and two on the Big Island.

On Oahu, the three projects will total around 120 MW and 515 megawatt-hours of storage; on Maui, they will total an estimated 75 MW and 300 MWh of storage; and on the Big Island, they will generate approximately 60 MW of renewable electricity and 240 MWh of storage.

More: Hawaiian Electric selects 7 solar-plus-storage projects for a combined 260 MW of renewable energy

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