En­ergy Park Now Gen­er­at­ing Power

MidWeek Islander (West Oahu) - - Front Page -

Af­ter four years of de­vel­op­ment and con­struc­tion, the Kalaeloa Re­new­able En­ergy Park is now up and run­ning, gen­er­at­ing elec­tric­ity for Hawai­ian Elec­tric cus­tomers on Oahu.

The park launched last month, and the project de­vel­op­ment and fi­nance team, in­clud­ing Han­wha Q CELLS USA, Hunt Com­pa­nies, Scatec So­lar North Amer­ica and Swin­er­ton Re­new­able En­ergy, gath­ered with HECO Dec. 16 for a com­mis­sion cer­e­mony and tra­di­tional Hawai­ian bless­ing.

Lo­cated on a 20-acre prop­erty near Bar­bers Point Golf Course, the fa­cil­ity is com­prised of 21,000 pho­to­voltaic (PV) pan­els and is de­signed to re­duce fos­sil fuel con­sump­tion. Ac­cord­ing to es­ti­mates by the U.S. En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion Agency, the park will pro­duce enough re­new­able power to pre­vent about 11,000 tons of carbon diox­ide emis­sions per year — that’s the equiv­a­lent of re­mov­ing nearly 38,000 cars from the roads.

“Projects like the Kalaeloa Re­new­able En­ergy Park bring us closer to meet­ing our state’s en­ergy goals while sup­port­ing work­force de­vel­op­ment for qual­ity, green jobs. Pub­lic-pri­vate part­ner­ships are key to ex­pand­ing re­new­able en­ergy ini­tia­tives with clear com­mu­nity

ben­e­fits,” stated Gov. Neil Aber­crom­bie, who at­tended the cer­e­mony.

The fa­cil­ity will gen­er­ate about 9 mil­lion kilo­watt hours of elec­tric­ity per year, which is enough to power 1,000 homes.

Han­wha Q CELLS USA will op­er­ate the fa­cil­ity for 20 years. The project is fi­nanced by PNC Bank.

“Part­ner­ships like this — with gov­ern­ment and pri­vate in­dus­try work­ing to­gether — are crit­i­cal to achiev­ing Hawaii’s clean en­ergy goals,” stated Scott Seu, Hawai­ian Elec­tric’s vice pres­i­dent for en­ergy re­sources and op­er­a­tions.

“We are proud to be a part of such an im­por­tant project and are com­mit­ted to re­duc­ing Hawaii’s de­pen­dence on im­ported fos­sil fu­els,” said Moon Hwan Cha, pres­i­dent of Han­wha Q CELLS USA. “We look for­ward to op­er­at­ing the Kalaeloa Re­new­able En­ergy Park for the next two decades, and sup­port­ing a clean and re­li­able en­ergy fu­ture for the peo­ple of Hawaii.”

Plus, as HECO cor­po­rate com­mu­ni­ca­tions of­fi­cial Peter Rosegg pointed out, re­new­able en­ergy gen­er­a­tion can help sta­bi­lize and lower cus­tomer bills over time.

“In Hawaii, util­ity-scale projects like the Kalaeloa Re­new­able En­ergy Park pro­vide di­rect ben­e­fits to all ratepay­ers through clean and low cost en­ergy,” said Luigi Resta, CEO of Scatec So­lar North Amer­ica. “More than ever, so­lar power is able to pro­vide util­i­ties an ef­fi­cient and cost-ef­fec­tive way to both meet en­vi­ron­men­tal goals and main­tain a re­li­able power sup­ply for con­sumers.”

HECO con­tin­ues to ex­plore its re­new­able en­ergy op­tions and is ne­go­ti­at­ing for sev­eral new util­ity-scale so­lar projects to­talling 240 megawatts. It also is seek­ing Pub­lic Util­i­ties Com­mis­sion ap­proval for a so­lar fa­cil­ity next to Kahe Power Plant.

“Hawai­ian Elec­tric is con­stantly seek­ing re­new­able en­ergy projects to sup­ply elec­tric­ity for our cus­tomers at lower cost than the volatile price of oil-fired gen­er­a­tion,” Rosegg noted.

Han­wha Q CELLS ex­ec­u­tives Moon Hwan Cha (left) and Si­mon Lee at­tended the grand open­ing of the Kalaeloa Re­new­able En­ergy Park ear­lier this month. Photo from Han­wha Q CELLS.

Kalaeloa Re­new­able En­ergy Park is lo­cated on 20 acres of land near Bar­bers Point Golf Course. Photo cour­tesy of Han­wha Q CELLS.

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