Business

Hu Honua Reaches Agreement with HELCO on Biomass Plant

May 10, 2017, 9:50 AM HST
* Updated May 10, 11:32 AM
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Hu Honua announced that it has reached an agreement with Hawaiʻi Electric Light Company on an amended power purchase agreement.

HHB workers. Photo Courtesy

HELCO agreed to revised terms for electricity to be produced by the biomass project and is submitting the amended contract to the Public Utilities Commission for approval of Hu Honua’s proposed pricing.

Hu Honua can resume construction on its half-completed facility and begin delivering clean, firm renewable energy by the end of 2018, if the PUC approves the amended PPA.

The project would deliver firm, renewable power around the clock.

Harold “Rob” Robinson, president of Island BioEnergy, Hu Honua’s parent company said, “It’s a big win for Hu Honua, Hawaiʻi Electric Light and the people of Hawaiʻi Island to have an amended agreement. We are hopeful the PUC will recognize the project’s value in terms of economic benefits and energy stability.”

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The amended PPA submission to the PUC includes information on pricing, which is lower than the original PPA; how the project will be less expensive compared to existing fossil fuel plants; and how the project will provide firm renewable energy that can replace existing fossil fuel plants.

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Approximately 200 construction jobs will be needed to complete plant reconstruction, which is expected to take 14-18 months. Once the plant is operational, nearly 30 permanent operations and maintenance jobs will be available.

Hu Honua will create approximately 200 jobs in forestry, harvesting, hauling, and in the production of wood products.

The project is expected to put $20 million into the local economy each year that would otherwise leave the state to purchase foreign oil, while helping the state secure its energy future and meet its clean energy goal of 100% renewable by 2045.

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