WAILUKU, MAUI – July 29, 2022 – Maui Mayor Michael Victorino today was joined by executives from AES and other state and county policymakers and dignitaries for the groundbreaking and blessing of Kuihelani Solar Plus Storage, the largest solar plus storage project in the state.
Located on 450 acres in central Maui, between Kuihelani Highway and Maui Veterans Highway, the Kuihelani Solar Plus Storage project is scheduled to open before the end of 2023 and will generate 60MW AC of clean renewable energy to meet the demand of 27,000 homes, supplying 15% of Maui’s energy needs. The solar power generation will be supported by a 240 MWh lithium-ion battery energy storage system. The project area is also 100% dual use and available for Maui agricultural.
AES has an approved 25-year power purchase agreement with Hawaiian Electric that will produce energy for Maui at 8-cents per kilowatt hour, the lowest cost of any renewable energy project in the state.
Mayor Michael Victorino noted Kuihelani is exactly the kind of project that is needed to meet Maui County’s renewable energy goals. “We are grateful to the AES team for the diligence they have demonstrated in getting this extremely important energy project underway,” said Mayor Victorino. “Maui residents will soon be seeing the benefit of Kuihelani in their electric bills and the reassurance of knowing they will have reliable electrical power for their homes and businesses.”
Construction and operation of Kuihelani will create nearly 300 jobs and generate $68 for the local economy. The project will also reduce the need to import two million barrels of oil.
Bernerd Da Santos, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of AES, stated that the Kuihelani project exemplifies direction in which AES is moving globally. “Like Hawai`i, AES is moving from fossil fuels to clean energy projects and has set ambitious renewable growth targets. We look for partners, like the state of Hawaii, the island of Maui and Hawaiian Electric Company, who are laying the groundwork for the transition to 100% renewable energy on every island grid. By working together, we are advancing a greener energy future and leaving these islands a better planet for our children, grandchildren, and future generations, while preserving and protecting Maui’s natural beauty.
Sandra Larsen, Hawaii market business leader for AES, said that the company sought and incorporated community input in the project design. “We reduced the size of the project site by 35%, minimizing the project’s environmental footprint, while maximizing the usage of the available land in a responsible manner.
“Mahalo to our community partners and collaborators for their work to make Kuihelani a reality. We look forward to starting operations next year and delivering Maui’s newest source of renewable energy to the island grid,” said Larsen.
Kahu Kimokeo Kapahulehua performed the blessing. Attendees at the groundbreaking and blessing ceremony included Public Utilities Commission Chair Leo Asuncion and Commissioner Naomi Kuwaye, State Senator Gilbert Keith-Agaran and State Representative Troy Hashimoto.
Statewide, AES has numerous renewable energy projects in operation or under development in all four island counties, which will collectively deliver more than 300MW of power to island grids. The projects will also eliminate emission of 100,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere annually and avoid the import of more than 7 million barrels of fossil fuel over their lifecycles.
The AES Corporation (NYSE: AES) is a Fortune 500 global energy company accelerating the future of energy. Together with our many stakeholders, we're improving lives by delivering the greener, smarter energy solutions the world needs. Our diverse workforce is committed to continuous innovation and operational excellence, while partnering with our customers on their strategic energy transitions and continuing to meet their energy needs today. For more information, visit www.aes.com.
In support of Hawai‘i’s 100% renewable energy goal of 2045, AES is accelerating its commitment to a greener energy future with nine renewable projects currently in operation or under development in the state, more than any other renewable energy developer. These projects will collectively provide more than 300 MW of renewable energy, enough to power 120,000 homes statewide, while eliminating more than 175,000 metric tons of carbon emissions and more than 15 million barrels of oil consumption over the course of their lifecycles. For information about AES in Hawai‘i, please visit www.aes.com/hawaii.
VIDEO AND PHOTOS COURTESY: AES HAWAI`I
• AES MAUI 1-
(L-R) Mayor Michael Victorino
Bernerd Da Santos, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of AES
Sandra Larsen, Hawai'i Market Business Leader for AES
Kahu Kimokeo Kapahulehua performed the blessing
• AES MAUI 2-
(L-R) Sandra Larsen, Mayor Victorino and Bernerd da Santos
• AES MAUI 3-
Kahu Kapahulehua talking with Sandra Larsen and Bernerd Da Santos
SOUND BITES (in this order, starting at 0:56):
• (0:56) Bernard da Santos, Executive Vice President for AES
• (1:15) Sandra Larsen, Hawai'i Market Business Leader for AES
• (1:54) Michael Victorino, Maui Mayor
• (2:28) Troy Hashimoto, Hawai'i State Representative
• (3:12) Mahina Martin, Director of Community and Government Affairs for Hawai'ian Electric