New 20MW Solar Farm to Power Pearl Harbor Navy Base
- Apr 25, 2018
Hawaiian Electric Co., REC Solar and the U.S. Navy partnered to develop a 20-megawatt solar farm at the U.S. Navy’s Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam West Loch Annex. Dubbed West Loch solar farm, the facility is anticipated to save customers $109 million over its 25-year lifespan.
REC Solar, recently acquired by Duke Energy, will build the 80,760-panel, fixed-tilt solar facility on 102 acres of U.S. Navy-owned land, which will mark the first grade-scale solar project to be owned and operated by Hawaiian Electric. In exchange for the land, Hawaiian Electric is providing electrical infrastructure upgrades to the Navy’s facilities. Upon completion, West Loch will produce the lowest-cost renewable energy in the state, at less than 8 cents per kilowatt-hour, while also reducing the utility’s use of imported oil by 76,000 barrels annually. The power it produces will be sent to the island’s electric grid and serve the customers of O’ahu.
“Our decade-long relationship with Hawaiian Electric helped to catalyze this development on U.S Navy land, expanding the suite of clean energy options available to the people of Hawaii. We look forward to contributing to the resiliency and sustainability of the Hawaiian Islands through this project and others,” REC Solar CEO Matt Walz said in prepared remarks.
“This project will help our state move closer to achieving its renewable energy goals and we appreciate our collaboration with a reliable partner like REC Solar,” added Ron Cox, senior vice president of operations for Hawaiian Electric. The utility company has been given the green light on 400 megawatts of grid-scale renewable projects in the next three years. Hawaii’s clean energy mandate commits to 100 percent renewable energy by 2045.