NRG Energy Breaks Ground on Three Hawaii Solar Projects

When online in 2019, the solar projects, including Hawaii’s largest, will help the State meet its 100% renewable energy goal

Release Date: 1/24/2018

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PRINCETON, N.J and HONOLULU --Jan. 24, 2018-- NRG Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NRG), in partnership with the Hawaiian Electric Company, Kamehameha Schools and others, has broken ground on three grid-scale solar power projects on the island of Oahu that will significantly contribute to the Hawaii goal of 100 percent clean, renewable energy for electricity by 2045. 

"Hawaii is on the front lines of the fight against climate change, and the shift to renewable energy is one of our best weapons," said Hawaii Gov. David Ige. "Building solar energy at this scale represents tremendous progress toward our renewable energy goals. I thank all the partners involved for making it happen."

The projects at Kawailoa, Waipio and Mililani total 110 megawatts (MW) and will produce low-cost, renewable energy equivalent to that used by almost 32,000 Oahu homes each year. This is the largest block of grid-scale solar power ever installed in Hawaii. 

"NRG is very proud to support Hawaiian Electric, the State and citizens of Hawaii as they move forward in their efforts to obtain 100 percent of their power from renewable resources," said Craig Cornelius, president of NRG Renewables. "Using just the plentiful sunlight that Oahu receives, these three solar facilities will generate clean energy for decades to come, and are an exciting step forward to help Hawaii have the cleanest electrical grid in the nation."

"This is an important moment in renewable energy progress for Oahu and for Hawaii," said Alan Oshima, Hawaiian Electric president and CEO. "These are the first major projects to break ground since our Power Supply Improvement Plan was accepted last year and we appreciate the efforts of NRG to bring an unprecedented amount of new renewable energy resources online. As always, our goal is better value for our customers, who will get the benefits of lower prices for clean, renewable energy over the life of these projects."

The three projects being built for NRG by Moss & Associates are:

  • Kawailoa Solar - The 49-MW Kawailoa Solar will use over a half million solar panels and be the largest solar project in the state, sited on former sugar cane land owned by Kamehameha Schools. Adjacent to the state's largest wind farm, Kawailoa Solar will share existing roads, switching and transmission lines. NRG will work with local ranchers to allow them to graze sheep at the project site. As part of NRG's community program, Kawailoa will host students in renewable energy education programs in partnership with Blue Planet Foundation and Kamehameha Schools.
  • Waipio Solar - The 45.9-MW Waipio Solar project will consist of over 160,000 panels on former cattle pasture owned by NRG in Central Oahu. The Waipio project will also be open to sheep grazing during operations, helping to manage vegetation while supporting local agriculture.
  • Mililani Solar II - The 14.7-MW Mililani Solar II project will use over 150,000 solar panels and be constructed on former pineapple land, now owned by NRG. Located within the Mililani Agricultural Park, the project will operate alongside active farming operations. 

All the power generated by the Hawaii Solar Project sites will go into the Hawaiian Electric grid for the benefit of all customers on Oahu. NRG expects to have all three projects completed in 2019.

About NRG
NRG is the premier integrated power company in the U.S., built on the strength of our leading retail platform and competitive electric generation portfolio. A Fortune 500 company, NRG creates value through best-in-class operations, reliable and efficient electric generation, and a retail platform serving residential and commercial businesses. Working with electricity customers, large and small, we deliver energy solutions that power millions of homes and businesses - to protect, enhance and simplify life. More information is available at www.nrg.com. Connect with NRG Energy on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @nrgenergy.

About Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc.
Since 1891, Hawaiian Electric Company has powered the islands' development from a Hawaiian kingdom to a modern American state. Hawaiian Electric and its subsidiaries, Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light, serve the islands of Oahu, Maui, Lanai, Molokai, and Hawaii, home to 95 percent of Hawaii's people. In a changing world, the Hawaiian Electric Companies are leading in adding renewable energy and developing energy solutions for customers to achieve a clean energy future for Hawaii. 

About Moss
Moss (www.mosscm.com) is a national, privately held construction firm providing innovative solutions resulting in award-winning projects. With regional offices across the United States, Moss focuses on construction management at-risk, design-build and public-private partnerships. The company's diverse portfolio encompasses a wide range of sectors, including luxury high-rise residential, landmark mixed-use developments, hospitality, primary and higher education, justice and solar energy. Moss prides itself on a strong entrepreneurial culture that honors safety, quality, client engagement and employee development. Its employees consistently rank Moss as one of the best places to work.

Information:
NRG - Barbara Tanabe, btanabe@hoakeacomm.com, 808.286.8414

Hawaiian Electric - Peter Rosegg, Peter.Rosegg@HawaiianElectric.com, 808.543.7780