Hawaii releases renewable energy progress report

By Anna Simet | December 31, 2015

Hawaii’s State Energy Office has released a report detailing the state’s progress toward achieving its goal of 100 percent renewable energy by 2045. The law was enacted in June, and designates the state as the most ambitious amongst those with renewable portfolio standards (RPS).

Since its Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative was established in 2008, the state has surpassed all RPS mandates ahead of time, according to the report. A previous target of 15 percent was reached in 2013—two years early—and in 2014, the percent of renewable energy in the state reached 21.1 percent, over a fifth of the way to its new goal of 100 percent.

In 2014, wind led renewable energy sources in Hawaii at 29.1 percent, followed by  distributed PV at 27.3 percent, biomass at 21.7 percent, geothermal at 12.3 percent, hydro at 4.3 percent, commercial solar at 3.4 percent and biofuels at 1.9 percent.

Currently, there are 60 renewable energy projects in development statewide, the report indicates. Of those, 19 are hydroelectric, 17 are solar, nine are wind, seven are biofuel, three are biomass, two are waste-to-energy, two are ocean, and one is geothermal. Together, the projects will have the capacity to generate about 150.3 million kilowatt hours per month, enough to power nearly 293,000 Hawaiian homes for the next 10 to 20 years.

The report also contains information on energy resource planning and modeling, how renewable NRG has been integrated into its energy security and hurricane planning strategies, and other policy and regulation driving the state’s clean energy efforts.