May 19, 2023 | Big Island Now

Blessing Held for Big Island’s Largest Renewable Energy Project with 94,000 Solar Panels

The Big Island’s largest renewable energy project, with 94,000 solar panels on 300 acres in Waikoloa, was blessed on Thursday with Hawaiʻi Gov. Josh Green in attendance.

May 19, 2023 | Hawaii Tribune-Herald

Waikoloa solar facility blessing promises transition to sustainable energy

Hawaiʻi Island became one step closer to the state’s goal of 100% renewable energy with the commissioning and blessing Thursday of the Waikoloa + Storage facility.

May 18, 2023 | Hawaii Public Radio

AES talks opening solar plus storage site amid Hawaiʻi's push for renewables 

The same company that owned and operated Hawaiʻi's last coal-powered electricity plant now has the most green energy projects underway in the state.

The AES Corporation has started operating its Waikoloa Solar + Storage Project, capable of generating up to 30 megawatts and storing 120 megawatt-hours. That's enough power for nearly 14,000 homes on the Big Island, according to AES.

May 17, 2023 | Honolulu Star-Advertiser:

Energy storage farm might rise in place of Oahu coal power plant

AES Hawaiʻi, the owner of an idle Oahu power plant that burned coal for 30 years until September held a ceremony Tuesday to bless what’s on the horizon in place of the hulking facility at Campbell Industrial Park. That horizon could include an electricity storage facility possibly with a solar farm after 2025 when work to dismantle the coal power plant, owned by AES Corp., is projected for completion.

May 16, 2023 | Hawaii News Now

Hawaii coal power plant to be dismantled, transitioned to renewables facility

AES Corp. said it will spend $20 million over the next two years to dismantle its coal power plant in Campbell Industrial Park. But on the ashes of the shuttered complex, the company is considering building a new battery storage complex.

May 4, 2023 | Honolulu Star-Advertiser

Waikōloa solar project is producing energy on Hawaiʻi Island

The AES Corporation’s Waikōloa Solar + Storage project is now online, feeding lower-cost, renewable energy to its grid. The addition of Hawaiʻi's first and largest solar-plus-storage project is expected to save Hawaiʻi island customers about $5 per month starting in June, Hawaiian Electric said. The 30-megawatt project, supported by a 120-megawatt-hour, lithium-ion battery storage system, can deliver enough energy to power nearly 14,000 homes.

May 2, 2023 | Civil Beat

Big Island’s First Large-Scale Solar Farm Starts Operating

A new solar farm has begun operating in Waikōloa on the Big Island. AES’ Waikōloa Solar + Storage project started feeding power into the island’s grid last month. The solar farm is the Big Island’s first and largest solar plus storage project. The utility said in a news release Monday that AES has a 25-year power purchase agreement that allows it to sell energy to Hawaiian Electric at 9 cents per kilowatt-hour. That’s one of the lowest rates for energy in Hawaiʻi and is expected to reduce customers’ monthly bills by about $5, the release says.

May 1, 2023 | Big Island Video News

Waikōloa Solar + Storage Project Goes Online

The project will increase the island’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) – the percentage of electricity generated by renewable resources – from 48% to 54%. For more than 25 years, Hawai‘i Island has been a national leader in the use of renewables with a diverse portfolio of resources, including grid-scale solar, private rooftop solar, wind, hydroelectric and geothermal.

April 21, 2023 | Naupaka News

Soaking up the Sun

Carefully positioned in neat rows in the foothills above Waikoloa Village – seven miles mauka of Waikoloa Beach Resort — 94,000 solar panels and 26 battery energy storage containers strategically soak up the sun. The project produces enough clean energy to replace the use of more than 511,000 barrels of oil over its 25-year lifespan. It will also reduce the amount of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions that are generated by the use of fossil fuels.

March 21, 2023 | KHON2 Living808

AES Hawaiʻi partners with Waikōloa Dry Forest Initiative

A team of AES Hawaiʻi employees and family members volunteered their day to support a tree-planting service project in partnership with the Waikōloa Dry Forest Initiative – a 275-acre conservation area located next to AES’ Waikōloa Solar + Storage project that begins full operations this spring. This service project is one component of the partnership between AES Hawai‘i and Waikōloa Dry Forest Initiative, which includes adopting an acre of the forestry preserve, planting more than 300 trees, making a donation in support of its mission, and supporting educational opportunities to teach students how vital protecting the environment and supporting reforestation is to Hawaiʻi Island.

March 3, 2023 | ClimbHI

Over 700 High School Students Sponsored Statewide in 2022-2023 by Businesses, Organizations for ClimbHI Workforce Development Credential

Hawaii workforce development nonprofit ClimbHI announces the donation of nearly $56,000 by businesses and organizations throughout Hawaii for the 2022-2023 academic year, sponsoring 708 students in grades 9-12 at 17 high schools statewide so they can earn ClimbHI Service Excellence Certificates.

March 2023 | Go Kapolei Magazine

A Net Zero Energy Future

University of Hawaiʻi - West Oʻahu (UHWO) takes a big step forward in realizing its environmental goals with the opening of AES’ solar project. This is University of Hawaiʻi's first major attempt at meeting its goal of net zero energy use by 2035, and the array will generate approximately 10% of the overall energy used by the schools. “Our West Oʻahu solar project carries special meaning for AES, being our first solar project on the island and because of how it will support the renewable energy goals of the UH West Oʻahu Campus, “ says Sandra Larsen, AES Market Business Leader for Hawaiʻi. “This spirit of community collaboration also extends beyond the project’s clean energy production to its long-term agricultural benefits, as cattle will graze on the 66 acres and beekeeping facilities will be established to produce honey.”

February 9, 2023 | KHON2 Living808

AES is Creating Opportunities in Renewable Energy

AES is creating job and scholarship opportunities for keiki and adults alike interested in learning more about the [clean energy] process. Sandra Larsen, the Hawaiʻi Market Business Leader explains, “We’ve been doing that by partnering with local schools and with UH to offer STEM programs. We also do hands-on learning experiences at our renewable energy sites. And AES has also contributed $30,000 to the Hawaiʻi Community Foundation to help provide scholarships for students who want to pursue renewable energy.”

August 23, 2022 | KHON2 Empowered Hawaii

Powering Forward

The closure of Hawaiʻi’s last coal-fired power plant marks the end of a 135-year era of burning imported coal in Hawaiʻi. But what will take its place and how does it affect you? On this episode, Empowered will explore how new, clean energy sources are powering up as coal powers down.

July 27, 2022 | Maui News

Kuihelani Solar facility to break ground as largest solar / battery project in state

When Kūihelani Solar begins operations, the facility is expected to generate clean renewable energy to meet the demand of 27,000 homes, supplying 15% of Maui’s energy needs. According to a presentation before the Waikapū Community Association in September of 2020, the project would provide economic benefits in the form of 294 jobs, and an economic output of upwards of $67 million.

July 27, 2022 | Hawaiʻi Public Radio

Final coal shipment marks end of an era for Hawaiʻi energy industry

Sandra Larsen, the Hawaiʻi Market Business Leader for The AES Corporation, says AES has already been able to place several of its employees into clean energy positions. “We have been working really, really hard with all of our employees to make sure that we find them jobs,” she told HPR. “One of our big goals is to make sure that we place everybody in employment at the end of this coal plant shutting down.” Larsen says AES as a whole is committed to moving away from coal by 2025. AES is set to break ground Friday on a new solar-plus-storage facility on Maui.

July 3, 2022 | Leaders Magazine

Renewable Energy Development in Hawaiʻi - An Interview with Sandra Larsen 

“Earlier this year, we announced our intent to exit coal by 2025, largely decarbonizing our operations worldwide over the next three years. Our transition to greener, smarter energy projects, both in Hawaiʻi and around the world, exemplifies AES’ commitment to a cleaner energy future,” said Sandra Larsen, Hawaiʻi Market Business Leader for The AES Corporation. Larsen is responsible for driving AES’ strategy, planning and operations to help Hawaiʻi fulfill its commitment to a 100% renewable energy future by 2045.