Renewable Energy Projects in Hawaii – October 2012

Hawaii’s Clean Energy Leaders

The 40 renewable energy projects cited on this web page are demonstrating progress in becoming commercial enterprises that have potential in assisting the State of Hawaii achieve its collective goals under the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative. If your efforts to develop clean energy projects are as dynamic as theirs, you could join them as a Hawaii Clean Energy Leader.

Learn about current renewable energy projects in Hawaii with the Hawaii Renewable Energy Projects Directory interactive map.

Project Name/Developer Island Resource Project Description Proposed Projection Capacity
Kawailoa Wind / First Wind Oahu Wind First Wind plans its fourth wind farm in Hawaii with a capacity of 69 MW on former sugarcane land owned by Kamehameha Schools northeast of Haleiwa. When complete, it will produce enough energy to power 14,500 Oahu homes. 69 MW
Auwahi Wind Farm / Sempra Generation Maui Wind Auwahi Wind will be Maui’s third wind farm and will integrate 21 MW of wind with a 12 MW battery energy storage capacity. The facility will be built at Ulupalakua Ranch. When complete, Auwahi Wind will produce enough clean, renewable electricity to power 10,000 Maui homes. 21 MW
Honolulu Emergency Power Facility / State Department of Transportation, HECO Oahu Biofuel The State Department of Transportation (DOT) is constructing a new Emergency Power Facility (EPF) for Honolulu International Airport. The EPF will use four generators to provide up to 10 MW of electrical power to the airport in the event of a major emergency or natural disaster. HECO will also be able to use the EPF for up to 1,500 hours per year to provide power to customers. In 2011, HECO signed a contract with Pacific Biodiesel to provide renewable fuel for the facility. 8 MW
Honua Power Project / Honua Technologies Oahu Waste-to-Energy Honua Power will create enough firm renewable energy to power approximately 12,000 Oahu homes by gasifying biomass that would have been deposited into Oahu’s commercial landfill. This will amount to an annual reduction of 124,000 tons of waste. 6.6 MW
HPOWER Expansion / City & County of Honolulu, Covanta Energy Oahu Waste-to-Energy The City & County of Honolulu’s waste-to-energy plant (H-Power) is adding a third boiler at Campbell Industrial Park to increase its capacity to 84 MW, about 6% of Oahu’s electricity needs. This new boiler will further reduce the strain on the Oahu’s landfill by 900,000 tons of garbage per year. 27 MW
Green Energy Agricultural Biomass-to-Energy Facility / Green Energy Team, LLC Kauai Biomass Locally grown eucalyptus, albizia, and other agricultural waste will be used as biomass fuel to generate enough renewable electricity to power 8,500 Kauai households. 6.7 MW
Port Allen Solar Facility / A&B, McBryde, KIUC Kauai Photovoltaic This PV array will be built on 20 acres of industrial land adjacent to KIUC’s Port Allen Station Power Plant. The facility will be integrated into a planned battery storage system installed by KIUC and is expected to be operational by the end of 2012. Partners include Hoku Solar and Helix Electric. 6 MW
Kalaeloa Solar Power II / SunPower Oahu Photovoltaic Kalaeloa Solar II is a 5 MW photovoltaic power plant being developed by SunPower near Kalaeloa airfield on land leased by the Dept. of Hawaiian Home Lands. It will use a tracking system to follow the sun, generating enough electricity to power over 1,000 Oahu homes. Kalaeloa II will sit adjacent to Kalaeloa Solar I, and together the two power plants will have a 10 MW capacity. 5 MW
Hu Honua Bioenergy Facility / Hu Honua Bioenergy, LLC Hawaii Biomass Hu Honua, LLC plans to upgrade the old Pepeekeo power plant to run on locally grown eucalyptus biomass. These new biomass generators will power 14,000 Hawaii Island homes with firm renewable energy, while simultaneously supporting agriculture on the Island. 21.5 MW
Cellana Biofuel Project / Cellana LLC Maui Biofuel From its six-acre demonstration facility on the Big Island’s Natural Energy Laboratory (NELHA), Cellana (formerly HR BioPetroleum) is developing microalgae strains in preparation for a planned commercial-scale algae biomass plant that will help fuel Maui Electric’s Maalaea Power Plant. 1.26 MGY
IC Sunshine Solar Project / IC Sunshine, SunEdison, Axio Oahu Photovoltaic The IC Sunshine Solar project is a proposed fixed-tilt solar farm to be developed on a 20-acre parcel of industrial land in Campbell Industrial Park on Oahu. 5 MW
Poipu Solar / AES, KIUC, Knudsen Trust Kauai Photovoltaic This PV array to be built on Knudsen Trust Land will power 800 homes on Kauai. The facility will be connected to a battery storage system at the point of interconnection to the KIUC grid. 3 MW
Off-Grid Powered Agricultural Operation / Gen-X Energy Development Hawaii Wind Gen-X is now installing Hawaii’s largest off-grid commercial project with its Wind Storage Platform Project which includes a Northern Power Systems 100 kW wind turbine coupled with Gen-X‘s proprietary power cube. The facility will power and autonomously control a water pumping system for diversified agricultural operation on the Island of Hawaii. Partially funded by the U.S. Department of Energy through the Hawaii Renewable Energy Development Venture. 100 kW
AKP Kau Renewable Fuel Facility / Aina Koa Pono Hawaii Biofuel Aina Koa Pono would produce between 3,000 and 5,000 gallons of liquid fuel per acre per year, suitable as a substitute for petroleum fuels in power plants or transportation. 24 MGY
Anahola Solar / Homestead Community Development Corporation, REC Solar, KIUC Kauai Photovoltaic Developed by REC Solar, the project is being undertaken by the Homestead Community Development Corporation in partnership with KIUC on 53 acres of land owned by the Dept. of Hawaiian Home Lands. The $50M project will provide up to 100 construction jobs and will be bay far the largest solar facility in Hawaii when completed. 12 MW
16 (15)* Kalaeloa Renewable Energy Park / Scatec, Hunt Development Oahu Photovoltaic Kalaeloa Renewable Energy Park is a proposed 21,000-module system in Kalaeloa. The 5 MW project would use 20 acres of land and when complete would provide enough power for up to 5,000 Oahu homes. 5 MW
Phycal Algae Pilot Project / Phycal Inc. Oahu Biofuel Phycal will supply up to 150,000 gallons/year of algae-base biofuel to HECO’s Kahe Generating Station. This is part of a pilot project based in a 34-acre facility near Wahiawa, to be followed with demonstration project that aims to produce up to 3 million gallons of algae biofuel. .15 MGY
Castle & Cooke Lanai Wind Project / Castle & Cooke Lanai Wind While Castle and Cooke no longer owns Lanai, they did retain rights to a proposed 200 MW wind farm that would utilize of some of the best wind resources in the world on the northwest side of Lanai. Power would be transmitted to Oahu via a undersea interisland cable. 200 MW
Kalepa Water Project / KIUC Kauai Hydroelectric A dual purpose irrigation and hydroelectric project with a capacity of 4.0 MW and an estimated annual production of 15.2 GWh. The proposed project would utilize water from the existing Wailua Reservoir and the South Fork Wailua River. 4 MW
Kalaeloa Home Lands Solar / Kalaeloa Home Lands Solar, LLC, DHHL Oahu Photovoltaic Kalaeloa Home Lands Solar, LLC proposes a 5 MW photovoltaic park on 29 acres of land to be leased from the Dept. of Hawaiian Home Lands in Kapolei. 5 MW
Kalaeloa Solar Power I / Keahole Solar Power, LLC Oahu Solar (CSP) Kalaeloa Solar I is a 5 MW micro-CSP (Concentrated Solar Power) farm being developed by Keahole Solar Power on a DHHL parcel adjacent to Kalaeloa Solar II (SunPower). The two facilities will have a combined capacity of 10 MW, enough to power 2,500 Oahu homes. 5 MW
UOP Integrated Bio-Refinery Pilot Project / Honeywell UOP Oahu Biofuel Honeywell UOP is conducting a pilot project to convert various biomass resources for green gasoline for transportation. The Integrated Biorefinery, funded by a $25 million US Department of Energy grant, is a project by UOP, a subsidiary of Honeywell. If successful, a 50 million gallon facility could be built with the potential to create 1,000 jobs in production and refinery operations. 0.06132 MGY
Molokai Renewables Wind Project / Pattern Energy, Bio-Logical Capital Molokai Wind Molokai Renewables is exploring the opportunity of installing 200 MW of wind on Molokai, with the electricity generation to be transmitted to Oahu via an undersea interisland cable. 200 MW
Ulupalakua Geothermal / Ormat Maui Geothermal If exploration wells at Ulupalakua Ranch prove viable, Ormat seeks to build a geothermal project similar to their Puna plant, which could generate up to 25 MW of clean renewable power to Maui, while creating up 30 full time positions at their plant. 24 MW
Maui County Landfill Waste-to-Energy / Maui County Maui Waste-to-Energy A proposed project would burn waste at the central Maui landfill, providing the Maui residents with up to 15 MW of renewable energy power. This would greatly lower the amount of waste—450 tons—that ends up in the landfill daily, and lower the current methane gas outputs of the landfill. 15 MW
Honolulu Sea Water Air Conditioning Oahu Sea Water A/C Cold, deep seawater will provide cooling for about 12.5 million square feet in some 40 buildings in downtown Honolulu. The 25,000-ton system is estimated to cut electricity consumption for air conditioning by 75% (air conditioning represents 35%-45% of a building’s energy use), and reduce potable water and chemical use. 25,000 ton cooling load
Castle & Cook Solar Farm (4) / Castle & Cooke Oahu Photovoltaic Four 5 MW solar farms are proposed to be built in the Mililani Agricultural Park. They will utilize approximately 120 acres and produce enough energy to power 6,000 Oahu homes. 20 MW (4 x 5 MW)
Puu Opae Water Project / KIUC Kauai Hydroelectric A dual purpose irrigation and hydroelectric project with a capacity of 8.3 MW and an estimated annual production of 40 GWh. The proposed project would utilize water from the existing Kokee Ditch Irrigation System, provide irrigation water for DHHL lands and ADC lands, and integrate with existing irrigation users. 8.3 MW
Hanalei River Hydroelectric Project / KIUC Kauai Hydroelectric A small run-of-river hydroelectric project with a capacity of 3.0 MW and an estimated annual production of 14.5 GWh. The proposed project would involve diverting water from the Hanalei River to a new powerhouse located about 3.5 miles upstream of the Hanalei Bridge. 3 MW
BioEnergy Hawaii Waste Conversion Facility /BioEnergy Hawaii Hawaii Waste-to-Energy /Biofuel Proposed solid waste conversion facility at NELHA would use solid waste diverted from the Puuanalulu landfill to generate electricity. The carbon dioxide created at the plant will feed algae beds which will be converted into biofuel for transportation. 11 MW
Lalamilo Wind Farm Repowering Project / Department of Water Supply, County of Hawaii Hawaii Wind The Department of Water Supply, the County of Hawaii is currently seeking bids for a developer to design, build, own operate and maintain a new wind energy generation system large enough to supply electricity to four (4) existing water wells in the Lalamilo area of the big island. This project will replace the old Lalamilo wind farm. 2 MW
Puu Lua Hydropower Project /Pacific Light & Power, Konohiki Hydro Power Kauai Hydroelectric The Kokee Ditch will serve as the source for a modern, efficient pressurized irrigation system that will service over 6,000 acres of agricultural lands. Power generated at the Upper and Lower Puu Lua hydro plants will be sold to the Kekaha Agricultural Association and its members, with excess made available to the island of Kauai. 5.3 MW
OTEC Pilot Project /OTEC International, LLC Hawaii Ocean Thermal OTEC International proposes to construct and operate a 1 MW OTEC facility on NELHA’s Hawaii Ocean Science and Technology (HOST Park). This facility is a test platform for research, development and demonstration (RD&D) to refine progressive phases of innovation of the OTEC technology. Advances achieved at the RD&D site will facilitate installation and operation of commercial OTEC power plants. 1 MW
Kekaha Menehune Water Project /KIUC Kauai Hydroelectric A dual purpose irrigation and hydroelectric project with a capacity of 1.5 MW and an estimated annual production of 6.5 GWh. The proposed project would utilize water from the existing Kekaha Ditch Irrigation System for generation and to provide water and repairs for the Menehune Ditch. 1.5 MW
Anahola Water Project / KIUC Kauai Hydroelectric A dual purpose irrigation and hydro project with a capacity of 300 kWh and an estimated annual production of 1.25 GWh. The proposed project would utilize the existing Upper Anahola Diversion and a rehabilitated reservoir, and provide irrigation water for DHHL lands in Anahola. 300 kW
MP2 Solar Project / KIUC Kauai Photovoltaic 300 kW PV array under development in Lawai. 300 kW
Olokele River Hydroelectric Project /Gay & Robinson, KIUC Kauai Hydroelectric The proposed Olokele River Hydropower Project will have a 6 MW capacity. 6 MW
Maui County Landfill Gas Project / Maui County Maui Biogas Proposed project to convert the methane gas produced at the central Maui landfill to renewable energy could produce as much as 1 MW of power, while simultaneously reducing greenhouse gas emissions. 1 MW
39 (39)* Big Island Beef Community Wind Project / Gen-X Energy Development Hawaii Wind Gen-X plans another community wind project that will utilize a Northern Power 100 Wind Turbine to power the Big Island Beef facility. 100 kW
Waikoloa Water Community Wind Project / Gen-X Energy Development Hawaii Wind Gen-X plans another community wind project that will utilize a Northern Power 100 Wind Turbine to power the Waikoloa water treatment facility. 100 kW


The following Energy Leaders are now operational.

Big Island Biodiesel / Pacific Biodiesel, Inc
July 2012 ranking: 10
Island: Hawaii
Resource: Biofuel
Production: 5 MGY
The Big Island Biodiesel refinery plant will use zero-waste, super efficient processing technology to process used cooking oil, trap grease, and locally grown crops into diesel fuel for vehicles and equipment.

Last updated: October 3, 2012

*Previous ranking July 2012

Hawaii’s Renewable Energy Leaders January 2012

Hawaii’s Renewable Energy Leaders November 2011


Collection of Data, Dlsclaimers and Descriptions
Energy leaders have been identified based on public information about (a) their projected size, (b) status of permitting, (c) status of power or fuel off-take agreement, and (d) site control.* Pertinent data comes from a variety of media including company press releases, company websites, newspaper articles, Internet publications, agency notices, and filings with the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission.

This project list is not all inclusive – nor is it complete. In fact, we expect it will change continuously as additional public information becomes available and project status changes. The data we gather from public resources is assumed to be correct. Financial information is not included as part of the listing criteria as this information is often closely held and not readily available utilizing public resources. Attempts have been made by the Hawaii State Energy Office to call the respective project personnel and verify that the information has been publically reported, but the Energy Office cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of all data. This list does not represent an endorsement of any specific project or company. Finally, we are aware that some proposed renewable energy projects in Hawaii may be missing from the list simply because little or no public information is available at this time.

*Category descriptions:
1) Size is an important component as it indicates a projects overall potential renewable energy/fuel contribution to the State of Hawaii’s aggressive goals set forth by the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative of 70% clean energy by 2030. Despite its importance, however, size is just one of the four categories considered in this listing as smaller scale projects are also demonstrating that they are advancing towards commercialization. Projected size is reported in megawatts (MW), kilowatt s ( kW) or gallons of fuel produced, based on the production capacity of each facility.
2) A power purchase agreement or contract to purchase an energy resource represents a future revenue stream for the specific project as well as validation that the energy resource is acceptable to the respective utility. The stages of the off-take agreement process range from ongoing negotiations with the utilities to executed terms sheets between utilities and projects, and finally, approval of the contract by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission.
3) Permitting for projects is a necessary component before construction of a project can commence. This is a long and often arduous process, but is very indicative of a project’s progress towards commercialization.
4) A project’s control over the site of operations either through a long term lease or land acquisition demonstrates an important component to long term commercial sustainability and production.


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