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We are looking for creative and innovative pilot projects for consideration under our IPF. Submit your ideas & proposals.

Innovation Pilot Framework (IPF)

On December 23, 2020, the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (“HPUC”) issued Decision and Order No. 37507 which among other things, included a Pilot Process to “foster innovation by establishing an expedited implementation process for pilots that test new technologies, programs, business models, and other arrangements.”

This page provides links to the relevant orders establishing the Innovation Pilot Framework (IPF), a description of the Areas of Collaboration, as well as links and information related to approved and upcoming pilot projects.

Goals and Guiding Principles

This Framework will be guided, in part, by the Commission’s overall Performance-Based Regulation (“PBR”) guiding principles of (1) a customer-centric approach, (2) administrative efficiency, and (3) utility financial integrity. More specifically, the Framework is designed to achieve the following guiding principles: Innovation, Flexibility, Iteration, Collaboration, Prioritize Learning, Customer-focused, Speed and Ownership. Learn more about our Goals and Guiding Principles in the Certificate of Service document (Exhibit 1).

Areas of Collaboration (AOC)

Hawaiian Electric, in collaboration with the Commission, the Consumer Advocate, and other interested stakeholders in the PBR Docket, identified the following Areas of Collaboration (AOC) that will guide development of potential pilot projects under the IPF. In selecting projects under the IPF, we will give strong consideration to those that may directly or indirectly benefit Low-to-Moderate Income (LMI) customers from across the State.

Click below for a description of each AOC. To learn more about the problem statements and goals for each area, view the IPF Workplan.

1. Decarbonization

In 2018, the State of Hawaii established a net-zero or less emissions clean economy target to be met as soon as possible and no later than 2045. We support and will play a role in achieving this objective while maintaining electric system reliability, security, and affordability. Decarbonization represents a broad, cross-cutting area that will require multiple sectors to assess new solutions in order to achieve state-wide carbon reduction targets. Piloting in this area can help assess various technical and business model options or applications related to economy-wide decarbonization, including the electric sector.

2. Customer Resources and Services

This AOC focuses on increasing customer engagement and options for expanding utilization of customer resources to provide grid services. Customer resources continue to be an important component of our portfolio to meet or exceed the State's renewable energy and decarbonization goals. It is anticipated that utility customers will continue to want options to manage their bills and participate in utility programs using their generation, storage, and loads. As such, we envision the need to continually innovate in this area to meet customer expectations through piloting efforts.

3. Beneficial Electrification

Beneficial electrification aims to replace direct fossil fuel use with electricity in a way that reduces overall emissions and energy costs. These strategies, which are applicable to commercial and residential customers, benefit the end-user and the environment. This category includes Electrification of Transportation ( EOT ) initiatives and can include broader electrification of industry initiatives. Beneficial Electrification also supports the Decarbonization AOC.

4. Data Sharing, Access, and Analytics

Data acquisition and analytics, and the safe sharing of this data, is a cross-cutting area of need that will impact a multitude of projects, programs, and pilots. Decision-making and continuous improvement efforts will continue to be highly dependent on the use and analysis of various data streams. Improved data collection and analytics will foster better planning, solution identification, product and services design, more informed decision making, and better stakeholder collaboration. This area also involves balancing privacy, cybersecurity compliance, regulatory requirements, cost, data monetization, and commercial concerns, among others.

5. Technology Innovations and Cybersecurity Improvements

Technology can transform existing processes with new capabilities that bring new insights, improved customer service, improved efficiency and enable new business services. In addition, addressing the escalating cybersecurity threat environment requires continuous innovation and collaboration with key stakeholders. Pilots are needed in this area to test innovative solutions that support the merging of operational and information technologies, telecommunications, digitization of utility operations, applicability of machine learning and artificial intelligence, data analytics, and cybersecurity capabilities.

6. Resilience and Innovative Reliability Approaches

A reliable, resilient electric system is essential for our customers and communities. A modernized grid must withstand and/or quickly recover from natural disasters, sudden changes in energy supply, as well as adapt to climate change.

7. Equity, Access, Affordability, and Sustainability

Equity, Access, Affordability, and Sustainability pilots are options to ensure that everyone benefits from the clean energy transformation and no one is left behind because of where they live or their economic status. Special considerations will be given to projects for LMI customers across the State. Piloting in this area is needed to further understand pathways and programs that can directly support LMI communities. Sustainability pilots can be more focused on enabling local supply chains.

Approved and Upcoming Pilot Projects

To maximize flexibility and foster innovation, we intend to utilize a variety of mechanisms to select pilot projects. These include, but are not limited to, discussions and inquiries initiated by us or third-party stakeholders, sole-sourced vendor collaborations, and formal requests for proposals.

View Pilot Projects

Public Meetings Related to Pilot Projects

As part of our ongoing commitment to transparency and sharing lessons learned about pilot projects, we will be hosting quarterly meetings. If you would like to be added to the mailing list and meeting invitations, please send a email to

Docket Filings and Workplan

Submit Project Proposal

We are looking for creative and innovative pilot projects for consideration under our IPF.

Submit your ideas & proposals