Hawaii PUC Approves Auwahi Wind Contract

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The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has approved a 20-year contract for Maui Electric Co. to purchase 21 MW of wind power from Sempra Generation's Auwahi wind project, located in southeastern Maui, Hawaii.

The project is currently undergoing environmental review by Maui County, State of Hawaii and federal agencies. Upon approvals, construction of the project is targeted to begin in early 2012. Construction is expected to take about one year, creating approximately 150 construction jobs at the peak and five full-time positions to operate the facility.

A battery energy-storage unit, capable of storing electricity generated by the project's wind turbines, will be utilized. This stored power will help to regulate and smooth intermittent wind power, according to Sempra.

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