Hawaiian Electric seeks more renewable energy projects

Hawaiian Electric Company started the process of developing even more renewable energy projects to help lower and stabilize energy costs for all electric customers on Oahu.

To ensure customers receive the benefits of these projects as soon as possible, Hawaiian Electric wants to seek projects that can be in service by the end of 2020.

“Our state is off to a good start to achieve 100 percent renewable energy and it’s important that we keep up the momentum. It’s critical that we act quickly to add more renewable energy so our customers can receive the benefit of transforming the electric system that serves them,” said Shelee Kimura, Hawaiian Electric vice president of corporate planning and business development.

As a first step and in accordance with the rules established by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC), Hawaiian Electric asked the PUC to open a docket to facilitate issuing a formal Request For Proposals (RFP) for new renewable energy projects on Oahu and to appoint an independent observer (IO) to oversee the procurement process. Appointing an independent observer early in the process would allow Hawaiian Electric and the IO to collaboratively design the RFP and the associated technical, operational, and performance requirements of any renewable energy proposals.

Hawaii is already a national leader, achieving more than 23 percent renewable energy in 2015. Adding more large-scale renewable energy projects on Oahu is one of the key steps in the five-year action plan identified in the Hawaiian Electric Companies’ Power Supply Improvement Plan update, filed with the PUC in April. While the plan is still under review by the PUC and other stakeholders, Hawaiian Electric believes that it is in the best interests of its customers to simultaneously keep moving forward in adding more renewable energy.