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United States

Solicitations for small Hawaii projects

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Few proposed wind farms in the Hawaiian Islands have been built, with the latest project to apparently fall by the wayside being a 5.28 MW proposal by California-based Hawi Renewable Development, planned for last year on the big island of Hawaii. Yet Hawaiian Electric and Light Company's subsidiary, Renewable Hawaii Inc, has released several more solicitations for small wind projects on the islands. The latest is for 1 MW or larger hybrid wind projects to be completed by the end of 2008 on Hawaii. Proposals are due this month. The hybrid requirement is due to transmission constraints, a situation shared by many of the islands, which each have their own generation and transmission systems. Many also have sparse populations and low electricity demand. Renewable Hawaii also released two solicitations last year. One closed in August, for Oahu, the most populous island. The second, in September, for the islands of Maui, Molokai and Lanai, closed in December. Proposals are still under review. All solicitations carry with them the warning that as-available generation, such as the intermittent generation provided by turbines, could be subject to curtailment, especially during periods of minimum demand. Hawi Renewable Development's plans are on hold as the company and utility negotiate an increase in the size of the project.

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