Articles from Hawaii

Dead bats are changing people’s minds about this energy project

“How many bats are you killing?” he asked. “Why is that OK? If that’s an endangered species, why is it right to kill 40 or 60 of them?” He also questioned how the wind farm was handling the remains of the bats that had been killed. “Did you put them in garbage bags and throw them away?” he asked. “Was there any burial treatment? We treat them like human remains.”
10 Dec 2018

Fire near Auwahi Windfarm

The Piʻilani Highway (Hwy 31) at Mile Marker 20 in ʻUlupalakua is now OPEN.  The road was temporarily closed in both directions for about an hour and a half while crews responded to a brush fire in the area of the Auwahi Wind Farm.
18 Aug 2018

Wind farms want permission to kill more bats — A lot more

“It’s a conservation conundrum,” said Phillips. “We want green energy, but are we willing to do that at the extinction of our only native land mammal?” Fish and Wildlife officials anticipate the draft of the programmatic environmental statement and each wind energy project’s habitat conservation plan will be available for public review and commentary by the end of this year.
14 Aug 2018

Blowing in the wind: Maui Electric Co. saves money by using fossil fuels

Curtailing wind energy has resulted in savings of $769,000 in 2015, $1.3 million in 2016 and $930,000 through November of last year for MECO. But this unexpected change in production cost is putting MECO in a bind. Should the utility accept more wind energy but at a higher cost, or use fossil generation, which is cheaper but has a negative environmental impact?
19 Jan 2018

Wind farm seeks to increase allowed number of bat deaths; Winged mammal’s population numbers are not known

“Hawaii has been through so much trial and error, and we don’t even have all the information at the table,” Tuivaiti said. “We’re still trying to figure out the population. We’re still trying to figure out about the bats themselves, and here we are just kind of playing God. . . . If we keep taking, we’re going to have nothing left.”
30 Nov 2017

Public may get more say in wind farms

On Thursday, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed a bill that requires wind farm developers looking to build in agricultural or country zones on Oahu to host a public hearing, present details to the area neighborhood board or community association and notify nearby property owners of the pending permit application.
13 Aug 2017

Wind power raises Maui electric bills

Hawaiian Electric Co. spokeswoman Shannon Tangonan said Wednesday the Maui utility’s purchase of power from wind facilities, instead of the utility-owned fossil fuel plants, caused the April bills to increase. ...Customers on other islands saw electric bills decrease in April.
20 Apr 2017

State might let wind farm kill more bats

A Maui wind farm wants the government to increase the number of endangered Hawaiian hoary bats it is allowed to kill, after passing the limit 15 years ahead of schedule. SunEdison Inc., owner of the 21-megawatt wind facility called Kaheawa Wind Power II, requested to increase the amount of hoary bats the facility is allowed to kill to 62 from 11 bats over its 20-year project with the Department of Land and Natural Resources. DLNR proposed to approve the increase in a bulletin called the Environment Notice from the Office of Environmental Quality Control released Thursday. “The proposed action would result in benefits at the local and state level by producing clean, renewable energy in line with Hawaii’s clean-energy goals,” DLNR said in the notice. “Effects to the Hawaiian hoary bat and nene would be offset by funding research, restoration, or land acquisition to mitigate for the take of each species. Based on the mitigation efforts, no adverse impacts to either species is anticipated.”
24 Feb 2017

Wind farms killing more bats than expected

“We don’t think the mitigation measure and adaptive measurements have met the standards of the law,” Phillips said. “Specifically with the Hawaiian hoary bat, we don’t really know how many bats there are. … Even at those numbers, if it’s only a couple hundred and if they are killing over 50 bats, that is a huge impact to the species’ base line.”
14 Jan 2017

NextEra subsidiary pulls out of Kahikinui wind project

Department Deputy Chairman William Aila Jr. said Thursday that the department was notified about two weeks ago that the NextEra subsidiary would be withdrawing from the project. That was a few weeks after the PUC rejected Next-Era's $2.63 billion bid to purchase Hawaiian Electric Co. NextEra had been collecting meteorological, archaeological and biological data to try to determine the best site for the wind power project, said Aila.
12 Aug 2016

http://www.windaction.org/posts?location=Hawaii&type=Article
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