PROPOSED ENERGY PROJECTS
In 2015, Hawai‘i enacted a law that requires electric utility companies to sell only renewable energy to their customers by 2045 (Act 97) — the first such mandate in the United States.
the first steps in implementing a utility-scale renewable energy project
Although each utility is different, typically the process begins with issuing a request for proposals (RFP) asking developers to submit bids to build a project and sell the energy to the utility. Developers scope out locations and develop cost estimates that conform to the utility’s requirements. The process is reviewed by the Public Utilities Commission through a quasi-judicial public forum. Selected bidders must sign a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) that is reviewed in another public process prior to approval.
The Hawai‘i State Energy Office encourages developers, communities, and affected residents to begin working with each other when projects are in the early scoping phase rather than after a PPA has been executed. This allows communities and residents to contribute meaningfully to all aspects of the project’s development and gives developers the information they need to submit a successful bid and keep their project on schedule. This website provides communities and residents with the information they need to engage in the process and opportunities for public input.
TWO ELECTRIC UTILITIES DELIVER POWER TO Hawai‘i RESIDENTS
Hawaiian Electric and Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC). Hawaiian Electric is a shareholder-owned public utility serving Hawai‘i Island, Lāna‘i, Maui, Moloka‘i, and O‘ahu. KIUC is a member-owned utility cooperative. Each island operates as an independent electric grid. Both utility companies are regulated by the Hawai‘i Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The public can access PUC filings related to individual projects and proceedings through the PUC’s online Document Management System provided users have the Docket Number of interest. Individual docket numbers can be found through the PUC homepage or through PUC’s Annual Reports to the Hawai‘i State Legislature.
Hawai‘i’s fossil fuel power plants have provided electricity to Hawai‘i residents for decades, but they are old, inefficient, and rely on internationally-sourced imported fuels subject to volatile energy markets. Hawaiian Electric and KIUC need a variety of renewable energy projects to replace these plants.
Each new utility-scale renewable energy project must be submitted to the PUC for review and decision. Some of these projects have been approved by the PUC, others are currently under review. An individual PUC docket has been created for each utility-scale renewable energy project listed on this website.
HAWAIIAN ELECTRIC COMPANY
Hawaiian Electric is seeking new renewable energy solutions to displace the aging fossil fuel power plants that currently serve its customers. The 180-megawatt coal plant at Campbell Industrial Park on O‘ahu closed on September 1, 2022 – representing a step forward in the transition to renewable energy. It was the state’s only coal-powered power plant and provides approximately 16% of Oahu’s electrical energy during peak demand. By the end of 2024, the 38-MW oil-fired Kahului Power Plant, owned and operated by Hawaiian Electric, is scheduled to close. It provides approximately 15% of Maui Island’s 24/7 power generation capacity. In addition, Hawaiian Electric plans to retire its Wai‘au 3 and 4 generators on O‘ahu, totaling 93 MW, by 2024.
Hawaiian Electric is required by the PUC to competitively bid for the new renewable energy power production it intends to buy and sell to its customers. In February 2018 and August 2019, Hawaiian Electric issued Stage 1 and Stage 2 competitive solicitations for new renewable energy generation projects on O‘ahu, Maui, and Hawai‘i Island. Stage 1 produced eight utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) plus storage projects. In August 2019, Hawaiian Electric issued Stage 2 of its competitive solicitation for new renewable energy generation and stand-alone energy storage projects on O‘ahu, Maui, and Hawai‘i Island. Stage 2 produced to date nine utility-scale solar PV plus storage projects and three utility-scale stand-alone storage projects.
On January 21, 2021, the Commission provided the Companies guidance to develop a Stage 3 RFP specifically for Hawai‘i Island. The Commission intends that this will be an “all-source” procurement, based upon an updated assessment of grid needs for the island. In compliance with that guidance, the Companies are proceeding with work on a Stage 3 RFP draft for Hawai‘i Island. More information on the Stage 3 RFP can be found on Hawaiian Electric’s webpage.
KAUAI ISLAND UTILITY COOPERATIVE
KIUC is in the planning stages for a solar + pumped-storage hydropower project planned in the Waimea District of Kauai. As proposed, the project would provide 18%-24% of Kauai’s electric utility needs including long duration storage. The long duration storage capacity (approximately 12 hours) will allow the island to run on 100 percent renewable energy for prolonged periods without sunlight and provide additional grid stability.
Hawai‘i State Energy Office’s Comment on the Draft Environmental Assessment published in August 2021 for the West Kauai Energy Project.
KIUC projects are not subject to competitive procurement; however, projects seeking any power purchase agreement require approval from the PUC.
Utility Scale Project Development Process General Summary
The figure shows the general process for a project moving through the competitive bidding framework. It is important to note that the PUC approves both the utilities’ request for proposals (RFP), the guiding document for project selection, as well as the individual project PPAs. Projects that do not go through formal competitive bids generally start the process at step four.
The PUC docket process is in open forum that allows for public comment at any time in the proceeding. In addition, each project must obtain the requisite federal, state, and county permits and approvals, many of which offer opportunity for public comment. HSEO’s Hawai‘i Statewide Energy Projects Directory and Hawaiian Electric’s Renewable Project Status Board provide additional information on these projects and other utility-scale projects now under development or construction, approved by the PUC, or awaiting PUC approval.
PROPOSED PROJECTS AND UPCOMING RFPS
HSEO posts public input opportunities for each project as they are announced. Please contact HSEO if you would like an outreach event about a particular project to be added.
Hawaiian Electric Stage 3 Request for Proposals Underway
The Hawaiian Electric Companies have filed RFPs with the Public Utilities Commission in Docket 2017-0352. The requests seek proposals on Hawaii Island, Maui, and Oahu. More information is available on Hawaiian Electric’s Competitive Bidding Webpage. The RFP for Oahu and Maui are combined. Hawaii Island has been approved by the PUC with conditions.
PROJECTS PROPOSED FOR DEVELOPMENT AND IN DEVELOPMENT (BY ISLAND AND ESTIMATED COMPLETION DATE)
Project information will be updated as information becomes publicly available.
|Project Name||Island||Location||Developer||Capacity (Megawatts, Megawatt-hours Alternating Current)||Utility’s Renewable Energy (%)||Project Status||Estimated Completion Date||Zip Code||Tax Map Key(s)||PPA Price ($/kWh)||PUC Docket||Information Links|
|Waiawa Solar Power||Oahu||Pearl City||Clearway Energy Group||36 MW+ 144 MWh Storage||1.2||PUC Approved; Constructing||December 2022||96797||(1)9-6-004:024||0.095925727||2018-0435|
|AES West Oʻahu Solar||Oahu||Kapolei||AES||12.5 MW + 50 MWh Storage||0.4||PUC Approved; Constructing and Permitting||June 20, 2023||96707||(1)9-2-002:007||0.115318548||2019-0050||AES West Oʻahu Solar|
|AES Mountain View Solar||Oahu||Waiʻanae||AES||7 MW + 35 MWh Storage||0.3||PUC Approved; Permitting||January 2024||96792||(1)8-5-003:031|
|0.130377024||2020-0139||AES Mountain View Solar|
|Ho’ohana Solar 1||Oahu||Kunia||174 Power Global, Hanwha Energy USA||52 MW + 208 MWh Storage||1.4||PUC Approved; Constructing and Permitting||October 2024||96797||(1)9-4-002:052||0.098858||2018-0431|
|Waiawa Phase 2 Solar||Oahu||Pearl City, Waipio Village||AES||30 MW + 240 MWh Storage||1.2||PUC Approved; Permitting||May 2024||96797||(1)9-6-004:024|
|0.124197||2020-0137||Waiawa Phase 2 Solar|
|Kupono Solar||Oahu||West Loch Pearl Harbor||Ameresco and Bright Canyon Energy||42MW + 168 MWh Storage||0.85||PUC Approved; Constructing and Permitting||April 2024||96706||(1) 9-1-010-122|
|Paeahu Solar||Maui||Wailea||Innergex Renewable Energy||15 MW + 60 MWh Storage||0.5||PUC Approved; Permitting||TBA – Pending Litigation at County||96790||(2)2-1-008:001||0.116845||2018-0433||Paeahu Solar|
|AES Kuihelani Solar||Maui||Waikapu||AES||60 MW + 240 MWh Storage||1.9||PUC Approved; Permitting||October 27, 2023||N/A||(2)3-8-005:002|
|0.077794||2018-0436||AES Kuihelani Solar|
|Kamaole Solar||Maui||Kihei||Kamaole Solar LLC (Potentia Renewables)||40 MWac + 160 MWh Storage||1.4||PUC Approved, Permitting||December 2024||96753||(2)2-2-002:001|
|AES Waikoloa Solar||Hawai’i||Waikoloa||AES||30 MW + 120 MWh Storage||0.8||PUC Approved; Constructing||April 21, 2023||96743||(3)6-8-002:050||0.079455||2018-0430||AES Waikoloa Solar|
|Hale Kuawehi Solar||Hawai’i||Waimea||Innergex Renewable Energy, Paniolo Power||30 MW + 120 MWh Storage||0.8||PUC Approved; Constructing||June 1, 2023||96743||(3)6-7-001:025||0.087399||2018-0432||Hale Kuawehi Solar|
|West Kaua‘i Energy Project||Kauai||Kekaha||AES and KIUC||35 MW + 1500 MWh Storage||22.7||PUC Approved; Undergoing Environmental Review||TBD||96752||Multiple, See Directory||Varies||2020-0218||West Kauai Energy Project|
STAND-ALONE STORAGE PROJECTS
|Project Name||Island||Location||Developer||Energy Storage Capacity (Megawatts, Megawatt-hours)||Utility’s Renewable Energy (%)||Project Status||Estimated Completion Date||Zip Code||Tax Map Key||PUC Docket||Information Links|
|Kapolei Energy Storage||Oahu||Kapolei||Plus Power||185 MW / 565 MWh||0.1||PUC Approved; Constructing||June 2023||96707||(1)9-1-014:042||2020-0136||Kapolei Energy Storage|
|Keahole Battery Energy Storage||Hawai‘i||Kailua-Kona||Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc.||12 MW / 12 MWh (1 hr)||N/A||Under PUC Review||TBD||96740||(3)7-3-049:036||2020-0127||Keahole Project Summary|
HE Self-Build Projects
|Waena Battery Energy Storage||Maui||Kahului||Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc.||40 MW / 160 MWh (4 hr)||0.2||Under PUC Review||TBD||N/A||(2)3-8-003:023||2020-0132||Waena Project Summary|
HE Self-Build Projects
Project information will be updated as information becomes publicly available.