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NREL Provides Technical Analysis for Hawaiian Electric Companies' Power Supply Improvement Plan

The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission approved a Power Supply Improvement Plan (PSIP) submitted by NREL partner Hawaiian Electric Companies (HECO) to upgrade its five island power grids. The plan calls for achieving a 48% renewable portfolio standard (RPS) by 2020 and 100% by 2040, five years ahead of schedule.

Aerial view of wind turbines on Maui

NREL research on advanced inverters and renewable resource potential in Hawaii helped inform the PSIP. To achieve the plan's goals, HECO will acquire nearly 400 megawatts of new renewable resources by 2021. The plan anticipates continued growth of rooftop solar and describes the work needed to expand and upgrade grid infrastructure, using the newest generation of inverters, control systems, and energy storage to help reliably integrate an estimated total of 165,000 rooftop systems by 2030, more than twice today's total of 79,000. 

HECO's Colton Ching credits its partnership with NREL for making these ambitious goals possible.

"Our Power Supply Improvement Plan calls for achieving 48% RPS by 2020 and more than doubling the amount of rooftop solar systems by 2030. These ambitious goals would not be possible if not for the partnership between NREL and Hawaiian Electric."

-Colton K. Ching, Vice President, Energy Delivery, Hawaiian Electric Companies