Hawaiian Electric Companies outline plan to meet renewable energy goals

Published on December 29, 2016 by Daily Energy Insider Reports

The Hawaiian Electric Companies recently submitted their Power Supply Improvement Plan Update, detailing how they intend to reach the state’s renewable energy milestones on or before mandated scheduling.

The goals outlined in the plan, filed last week with the Hawai’i Public Utilities Commission, are the most ambitious in the United States.

The companies predict that they’ll reach a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) of 48 percent by 2020. The mandated RPS by 2020 is 30 percent. They also forecasted that they would reach the goal of 100 percent RPS by 2040, five years ahead of the mandated deadline.

The plan approximates that Hawaii could reach an RPS of 100 percent after 2030 if customer generation of their own electricity and the use of battery storage is included in the estimate.

Hawai’i Island is predicted to reach an RPS of 80 percent, Maui 63 percent, Lānaʻi 59 percent and O’ahu 40 percent by 2020. The plan is aiming for a 100 percent RPS on the island of Moloka’i by 2020.

“The energy transformation must include everyone,” the plan said as one of the seven principles Hawaiian Electric developed to broadly define their power supply improvement mission.

Actions detailed in the plan include increased use of rooftop solar, grid-scale solar and grid-scale wind, as well as improvements to grid infrastructure and demand response programs. The updated plan eliminates the use of liquefied natural gas in the near future.

“We have a solid plan that accelerates our progress to get to 100 percent renewable energy. We can do this,” Alan Oshima, president and CEO of Hawaiian Electric, said. “We want to work with parties from all segments of our community — government, business, community, and environmental groups – to refine the plans for Hawai’i’s energy future.”