Honolulu, February 24, 2012 – First Wind, an independent U.S.-based wind energy company, today celebrated the start of construction of its 69 MW Kawailoa Wind project on Kamehameha Schools’ Kawailoa Plantation lands on Oahu’s North Shore.
The site’s thirty 2.3 MW Siemens wind turbines will have the capacity to generate enough renewable wind energy to power the equivalent of about 14,500 homes on the island, or as much as five percent of Oahu’s annual electrical demand.
Hawaii state law mandates 70 percent clean energy for electricity and surface transportation by 2030, with 40 percent coming from local renewable sources. Kawailoa Wind will advance the state’s progress toward these goals.
First Wind owns and operates two other wind energy projects in Hawaii, and is currently building another project on Maui. Kahuku Wind, also located on Oahu’s North Shore, is a 30 MW wind project that has the capacity to generate enough energy to the power the equivalent of 7,700 Oahu homes.
The Kahuku project went online in March of 2011. Beginning commercial operations in 2006, the 30 MW Kaheawa Wind project is above Ma’alaea. First Wind is currently building a second Maui project, Kaheawa Wind Power II that will consist of 14 wind turbines, capable of generating 21 MW of energy. Once Kaheawa Wind II is complete, the two Kaheawa projects will have a capacity of 51 MW.