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KIUC leads the state in renewable generation

LIHU‘E — The Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) announced that for the fifth straight year the island cooperative led the state of Hawai‘i in renewable generation after achieving 57.9 percent renewable for 2023.

In a press release issued in early June, KIUC said it is well ahead of the state’s requirement of 40 percent renewable standard by 2030, to be achieved by each electric utility as established by amended House Resolution 269-92(a).

“In addition to leading the state in renewable, we are proud to have recorded the lowest residential rates for all the islands since May 2022,” said KIUC President and CEO David Bissell in the press release.

“Our high percentage of renewables has contributed significantly to the stabilization of our rates even during times of significant increases in oil pricing,” Bissell said.

KIUC’s current strategic goal of reaching 100 percent renewable by 2033 is more than a decade ahead of the state’s goal of 2045.

The island utility reported the 57.9 percent for 2023 to the Hawai‘i Public Utilities Commission in its annual renewable portfolio standards. Of that total, solar contributed 38.1 percent of KIUC’s 2023 generation. Nearly one-third of the solar production came from members’ rooftop systems.

Other renewables contributing to the 2023 amount were hydropower producing 12 percent and biomass contributing 7.8 percent.

During 2023, KIUC also started using biodiesel to enhance its renewable portfolio.

“Biodiesel can contribute to grid stability when we’re operating on a high percentage of solar,” said KIUC’s Chief of Operations Brad Rockwell. “However, biodiesel is presently more expensive than most other renewable sources, so we’ll use it sparingly and strategically for the time being.”

For more information on KIUC’s strategic goals, visit the cooperative’s website at www.kiuc.coop/strategic-plan.
Source: The Garden Island

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