In the evening of Monday, July 13, 2020, KCA attended a community open house video conference presented by Longboard Development Company, LLC, the developers of a proposed 40 MW photovoltaic panel array with a 160 MW battery energy storage system (BESS) on 1,087 acres of leased Haleakala Ranch land zoned Agriculture D & E. The project is on the makai side of Pulehu Rd and will connect to existing overhead transmission lines.
There were 70 community participants attending the video conference which was facilitated by Teena Rasmussen of Skog & Rasmussen, LLC.
A history of Longboard Development’s Hawaií state projects include:
*Completed: Phases one and two of Kahe’awa wind farm upslope from Maálaea.
*Under negotiation: Mahi Solar (Oáhu-Kunia), Pulehu Solar (Maui-Pulehu).
Hawaií has a Renewable Standards Portfolio (RPS) goal of 100 percent by year 2045. Future sources of clean, renewable energy are also in the Maui County General Plan. This proposed 40 MW solar array is enough to power approximately 15,000 Maui homes per day.
The Kahului power plant will be taken out of service in 2022 and replaced with renewable energy. The Pulehu Solar project will be part of that renewable energy effort.
Currently, the developer does not have a Power Producer Agreement (PPA); therefore, the cost per kWh for the project has not yet been determined. Once reached, the PPA will lower the cost of electricity for 25 years at a fixed price & projected to be lower than fossil fuel costs.
* permits, studies, community outreach – 1 year;
* project physical assembly – 6-8 months;
* construction of substation – 1 year.
Total 2.75 years. All the panels in the project will be operational by October, 2023.
Once the PPA expires after 25 years, the developer will either decommission the project (remove electrical infrastructure, recycle or donate panels, & return land to natural state), or return the project to HECO for further consideration.
Longboard Development’s studies will include: archeological, biological, cultural, traffic studies, reflectivity analysis (for glare), view plane study, geo-technical investigation, boundary and topical surveys, hydro survey, visual computer-generated simulations, and a storm runoff mitigation study.
The project will generate an estimated 150 local construction jobs.
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