Maui Electric issuing largest call for renewable energy projects for Molokai, Lanai

Release Date: 12/2/2019

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KAHULUI, Dec. 2, 2019 – Maui Electric Company is starting the largest procurement for renewable energy resources on Molokai and Lanai in efforts to reduce the reliance on imported oil for power generation and move the state closer to its goal of 100 percent renewable energy by 2045.

Approved by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), the company is issuing a request for proposals today for renewable energy paired with energy storage from developers locally and globally. Details are at www.mauielectric.com/molokaicompetitivebidding and www.mauielectric.com/lanaicompetitivebidding.

"This effort is a big step in accelerating the transition to using locally-sourced clean energy resources to power our islands," said Sharon Suzuki, president of Maui Electric. "Replacing imported fossil fuels with large-scale renewable energy projects results in cleaner energy at lower prices for all customers."

Estimated targets being sought for Molokai are the equivalent of approximately 4 megawatts (MW) of solar or 3.6 MW of small wind, specified as turbines 100 kilowatts or less, and paired with energy storage. A portion of the Maui Electric-owned Molokai property at Palaau is also being offered to proposers as a potential development site.

On Lanai, the company is seeking renewable energy generation equivalent up to 9.5 MW of solar paired with energy storage on land owned by Pulama Lanai.

Development of the competitive bidding plans involved participation from the Molokai and Lanai communities. This included community meetings where the company explained the request for proposal process and provided opportunities for residents to submit written comments and concerns for developers to be aware of when preparing their proposals.

Feedback received from Molokai and Lanai residents from additional past community outreach efforts have also been incorporated in the plans, such as limiting the type of renewable energy technologies being sought in the respective procurement efforts.

Maui Electric’s guiding principles in seeking renewable energy and grid services include transparency, predictability and streamlining to lower costs for customers, with community engagement essential to success.

Pending negotiations of contracts and final approvals, the renewable generation projects from these RFPs would come online in 2023. The timeline for proposals is:

Molokai

Event Date
Final RFP is issued December 2, 2019
Proposal due date January 31, 2020
Companies select priority list March 31, 2020
Best and final offers due April 7, 2020
Final award group named July 14, 2020
Contract negotiations begin July 22, 2020

Lanai

Event Date
Final RFP is issued December 2, 2019
Proposal due date January 31, 2020
Final award group named March 31, 2020
Contract negotiations begin April 7, 2020