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Renewable Energy Sources

Hydroelectricity

Makila Hydro Plant

  • LOCATION: Lahaina, Island of Maui

  • ENERGY SOURCE: Run-of-river water flow

  • TECHNOLOGY: Hydraulic turbine generators

  • SYSTEM SIZE: 500 kW

  • POWER PURCHASE TYPE: As-available

  • OWNER-OPERATOR: Makila Hydro LLC

  • DESCRIPTION: The original hydroelectric facility on the slopes of Kauaula Ridge above Lahaina is over 75 years old. It once provided power for Pioneer Mill Company, founded in 1862 and closed in 1999. The plant then stood idle for a time. On September 22, 2006, after substantial refurbishment by Makila Hydro LLC, the plant was connected to Maui County's grid providing 500 kW of renewable energy. The facility was damaged in the October 15, 2006 earthquake but returned to service in 2008.


Hawaiian Electric Waiau & Puueo Hydropower

Puueo Hydroelectric Plant
  • LOCATION: Hilo, Hawaii (Wailuku River)

  • ENERGY SOURCE: Run-of-river water flow

  • TECHNOLOGY: Hydraulic turbine generators

  • SYSTEM SIZE: 1.15 MW (Waiau), 2.25 MW (Puueo)

  • TYPE: As-available

  • DESCRIPTION: Hawaiian Electric owns and operates two hydroelectric facilities arranged in tandem along the lower reach of the Wailuku River near Hilo. The Waiau plant was constructed in 1920 and upgraded in 1947. The Puueo plant downstream was built in 1910 and upgraded in 1941. Penstocks (pipes that divert water to the plants) of both facilities were refurbished in 1998. Horizontal-axis, Pelton hydraulic turbines at each plant generate electricity


Wailuku River Hydroelectric Power Company

Wailuku River Hydroelectric Power Company
  • LOCATION: Hilo, Hawaii (Wailuku River)

  • ENERGY SOURCE: Run-of-river water flow

  • TECHNOLOGY: Hydraulic turbine generators

  • SYSTEM SIZE: 11 MW

  • POWER PURCHASE TYPE: As-available

  • DESCRIPTION: The Wailuku River Hydroelectric Power Company plant began commercial operation in 1993. It is located at the junction of the Wailuku River and the Kaloheahewa Stream. Hawaii Island also receives power as available from smaller plants operated by the County Department of Water Supply, Wenko Energy Company, and various farms.