First Wind has started construction of its 30MW Kahuku Wind project in Oahu, Hawaii. The project will consist of 12 2.5MW Clipper Liberty wind turbines.
The Kahuku Wind project will generate enough energy to power up to 7,700 Oahu homes each year. It will include a battery energy storage system to assist in meeting performance standards and smoothing fluctuations in wind energy output. It will also include a communication system to connect the wind energy project to Hawaiian Electric's system operations and dispatch center.
In early May, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission approved a power purchase agreement (PPA) between Kahuku Wind Power and Hawaiian Electric for the utility to purchase renewable energy to be produced by the Kahuku Wind project.
As part of the PPA, First Wind will sell as-available renewable energy from the project to Hawaiian Electric at pre-determined prices over 20 years, providing a hedge against fluctuating oil prices.
Dick Rosenblum, president and CEO of Hawaiian Electric, said: "This wind farm is a significant addition to our portfolio of renewable energy resources on Oahu. It's an example of what can happen when our community works together to increase our energy security and reduce our state's dependence on imported oil."
Boston-based First Wind is an independent energy company exclusively focused on the development, financing, construction, ownership and operation of utility-scale wind projects in the US.