Hawaiian Electric selects developer to add firm renewable energy to Maui’s power generation mix

Ameresco project selected in latest round of clean energy procurement

Release Date: 2/2/2024

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KAHULUI, Feb. 2, 2024 – Hawaiian Electric has selected a developer for a proposed firm renewable energy project on Maui that is part of the company’s latest phase of clean energy procurements aimed at reducing Hawaii’s dependence on imported oil for power generation.

The 40-megawatt (MW) biofuel-powered generator proposed by Ameresco Inc. would help move Hawaii closer to its clean energy goals, while adding critical grid reliability with firm renewable energy. Firm resources differ from variable resources such as solar and wind, in that they are available at all times. The facility would be built on property owned by Hawaiian Electric at Waena across from the Central Maui Landfill – Refuse and Recycling Center on Pulehu Road.

The Maui proposal is part of the most recent round of clean energy procurement that includes a total of 16 firm and variable renewable energy projects selected on Maui, Hawaii Island and Oahu. Also selected for Maui were three solar-plus-storage projects and one wind project.

Hawaiian Electric will now start contract negotiations with the selected project developers, who will conduct outreach in the communities where they plan to build. For the first time, developers were required to submit community outreach and benefit plans that were evaluated along with technical and financial criteria.

Once Hawaiian Electric finalizes contracts with the developers, the contracts will be submitted to the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for review and approval. At that time, more details on price and bill impact will be made public. The selection process was overseen by an Independent Observer and Independent Engineer, selected by the PUC to ensure that all proposals – including projects proposed by Hawaiian Electric – were reviewed fairly and objectively.

The projects selected are the result of a procurement effort that Hawaiian Electric began in May 2022 for Oahu and Maui and in November 2021 for Hawaii Island. For a list of the projects and links to each project website, please see the Renewable Project Status Board page: hawaiianelectric.com/statusboard.