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Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Designed to Fail? HECO Seeks Green Energy Projects on Oahu
By News Release @ 1:14 PM :: 5526 Views :: Energy

HREA: No Developers Interested in HECO Offer

SA 2-27-13: Warren Bollmeier, who heads the Hawaii Renewable Energy Alliance, said he was not aware of any developers who were interested in pursuing HECO's offer. He added the HECO proposal does not guarantee that any projects will be completed any more quickly than under the RFP.

"There is a lot to be learned from this, not the least of which is that HECO will find out what developers think they can actually do. The problem is that even if they pick one developer, it may take another two or three years to find out whether they really can deliver," Bollmeier said.

read … HECO offers to waive rules for renewable-energy projects

Hawaiian Electric seeks low-cost, near-term renewable energy projects to help lower customer bills

News Release from HECO February 25, 2013

(Honolulu, Hawaii) -- Hawaiian Electric Company is working to lower customers’ electric bills in the near term by seeking qualified utility-scale renewable energy projects that developers can place into service quickly at a low cost per kilowatt-hour.

If one or more such projects are identified, Hawaiian Electric will work with the developer to seek a waiver from the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC) Competitive Bidding Framework. To qualify to seek a waiver, a project must be located on Oahu, be larger than 5 megawatts and may use any viable renewable technology.

The project must meet all applicable archeological, environmental and construction permitting requirements. In addition to receiving a waiver from competitive bidding, Hawaiian Electric and any developer selected must negotiate a power purchase agreement that will be subject to PUC approval. The goal is to have one or more such projects in service by 2015.

“We believe the best way to reduce our customers’ bills is to add as much renewable energy on long-term, fixed-price contracts to our grids as soon as possible,” said Scott Seu, vice president for Energy Resources & Operations. “We believe there may be projects substantially ready to go that can be built quickly and at a cost that can help reduce our heavy dependency on fossil fuels.

“We cannot control the cost of the oil which has caused our customers’ bills to rise so much,” Seu said. “But we can accelerate addition of more renewables of all kinds to reduce these high bills as soon as possible.”

The “Invitation for Low Cost Renewable Energy Projects on Oahu Through Request for Waiver from Competitive Bidding” and an application form are posted at Questions may be sent to the email address on the site.

Among the criteria for Hawaiian Electric to consider requesting a waiver from competitive bidding: (Question: Are these criteria written to discourage bids?)

  • Generally, only projects with a levelized cost below 17 cents/kilowatt-hour will be considered for a waiver request. Projects with neutral bill impacts or that would increase customer bills will not be considered.
  • Developers must be willing to provide Hawaiian Electric, the PUC and Consumer Advocate with complete “open book” access to all project financial information prior to application for a waiver, in lieu of competitive bidding.
  • Developers must agree to Hawaiian Electric’s model power purchase agreement for variable renewable energy.
  • Projects must have an experienced team with a demonstrated record of successful renewable energy project development and operation.
  • Anticipated commercial operation date must be no later than the end of 2015. Hawaiian Electric is still working to release a request for proposals for 200 MW of variable renewable energy titled, “Renewable Energy and Undersea Cable System Projects Delivered to the Island of Oahu” later this year, pending approval of the PUC. Projects not selected for a waiver request or denied a waiver may still bid without prejudice into the 200 MW RFP when it is released.

Project proposals for waiver consideration must be received by 4 p.m. HST, Friday, March 22, 2013 at

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Related: SB120: $3.5B Rate Hike and No Natural Gas for Hawaii


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