Investing in the Future
Under the Competitive Bidding Framework rules approved by the PUC, Hawaiian Electric may propose "self-build" projects – developed, constructed and owned by the utility – to meet generation and/or capacity needs across its service territories.
As a result, in response to the August 2019 Request for Proposals, Hawaiian Electric submitted proposals to develop five grid-tied battery energy storage systems (BESS) on Oahu, Maui and Hawaii Island. On May 11, 2020, the Maui (Waena) and Hawaii Island (Keahole) BESS were among 16 projects selected to the final award group by the RFP team, and Hawaiian Electric will proceed with these two projects. The other three Hawaiian Electric projects – Kahe BESS, CEIP BESS and Puna BESS – were not selected to the final award group and will not proceed.
Public comments on the projects were earlier collected between late February to mid-May 2020 and virtual public meetings held. These comments have been included in our PUC application. Upon filing, we will be soliciting a second round of public comments which will be shared as part of the docket associated with the project application.
9/8/2020 UPDATE: The PUC application for the Waena BESS project was filed on September 8, 2020. Comments/questions can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org until October 8, 2020 and will be included in our application.
8/28/2020 UPDATE: The PUC application for the Keahole BESS project was filed on August 28, 2020. Comments/questions can be submitted to email@example.com until September 26, 2020 and will be included in our application.
About energy storage systems
Grid-tied energy storage is an important component of a clean, sustainable energy future. To meet the state’s renewable energy goal of 100 percent by 2045, grid-tied energy storage will support system reliability as more variable renewable energy is added to the grid.
BESS can provide multiple grid benefits including load-shifting and contingency support.
Load-shifting – stores energy during periods of low customer demand, for use during early morning hours and at night when electricity demand is at its highest. This type of BESS enables the electric grid to accommodate more renewable sources, such as solar and wind, while it displaces thermal generation and helps lower emissions.
Contingency – allows stored energy to be sent to the grid as a quick response to an unexpected event such as a sudden drop in energy production from wind, solar, or a thermal power plant. This quick response capability improves grid reliability and reduces the likelihood of customer outages.
Please see below for details on each proposed battery energy storage system (BESS), by island:
On Maui, new renewable generation and storage is needed for the planned retirement of Kahului Power Plant by the end of 2024. Hawaiian Electric proposes to build a load-shifting BESS on its property near the Central Maui landfill.
On Hawaii Island, Hawaiian Electric proposes to build contingency battery storage systems at its substations in Keahole to support reliable operations.