East Hawaii News

Hawai’i Electric Light: Energy Margins Return to Normal

April 22, 2016, 3:59 PM HST
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Hawai'i Electric Light's Hilo office on Kilauea Avenue. File photo by Dave Smith.

Hawai’i Electric Light’s Hilo office on Kilauea Avenue. File photo by Dave Smith.

Electric generation margins have returned to normal levels.

Hawai’i Electric Light says that normal levels of energy generation production are back after one of Hāmākua Energy Partners’ combustion turbine units was returned to service Thursday night.

A spokesperson for the utility company says that a second unit is anticipated to return to service early next week. The addition of the second unit will create an even larger improvement in the margins.

“The increase in the number of available units improves our reserve margins, and we expect to have sufficient generation,” said Rhea Lee-Moku, Hawai‘i Electric spokesperson. “On a daily basis, we estimate our energy needs to meet the needs of our customers.”

The company says that contingency planning is conducted so that adequate generation is available if there is a sudden or unplanned loss of one of the large units. Use of wind and hydro are considered bonus resources when they are available, but are generally not included in the planning because of their variability.

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“We’d like to thank everyone for their cooperation and understanding during the past week,” Lee-Moku said. “Our employees and partners are committed to meeting the electricity needs of our community, and many of them went beyond the call to ensure we could continue to provide reliable service for our customers.”

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