Wind and Solar Could Supply 25% of Oahu's Electricity ‎


"Renewables could eliminate 2.8 Mbbl. oil and 132 Kt. coal/year."

The Oahu Wind Integration Study (OWIS) was conducted by Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, General Electric (GE) Company, and the Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO).

The study found that the combined 600 MW of renewable energy could eliminate the need for approximately 2.8 million barrels of low sulphur fuel oil and 132,000 tons of coal each year, while still maintaining a reliable system, if the following recommendations are incorporated:

- Provide state-of-the-art wind power forecasting;

- Increase power reserves to help manage wind variability;

- Reduce minimum stable operating power of baseload generating units;

- Increase ramp rates of Hawaiian Electric's thermal generating units;

- Implement severe weather monitoring;

- Evaluate other resources capable of contributing reserve, such as fast-starting thermal generating units and load control programs.

"To reach our renewable energy goals we need to use all the resources available to us. For Oahu, this includes the utility-scale solar, roof-top solar, waste-to-energy and on-island wind that we are pursuing," said Hawaiian Electric executive vice president Robbie Alm.

"We know that more solar power is possible on Oahu than was studied by the OWIS. However, this baseline study is an essential first step for the Interisland Wind Project. . .The questions now are financing, environmental impact and whether the affected communities can [benefit from] the project."

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