Input Sought on Proposed 40 MW Solar Project at Haleakalā Ranch

July 9, 2020, 8:50 AM HST · Updated July 10, 8:01 AM
Wendy Osher · 4 Comments
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PC: Kamaʻole Solar Project

A proposed 40 megawatt solar photovoltaic energy project with 160 MWh battery energy storage is proposed for development on Haleakalā Ranch land in the South Maui community of Kīhei.

The Kamaʻole Solar Project is the subject of a Virtual Open House set for 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 14, 2020.  Click here to register or request a registration link by email at [email protected]

The project is proposed by Pacific Green Ikehu LLC, a subsidiary of SB Energy Corp., a Japan-based subsidiary of SoftBank Group Corp. Pacific Green Ikehu was selected through Maui Electric Company’s competitive process to build the facility on approximately 320 acres of Haleakalā Ranch land in the Kamaʻole Ahupuaʻa of Maui.

The area is currently used for pasture and wildlife habitat, including upland game birds.  A preliminary archaeological and cultural literature review of the site by the Cultural Surveys Hawaiʻi consulting firm found that the area could have been used traditionally for agriculture and temporary habitation. The study reportedly notes that area also has a long history of ranching activities that typically required the construction of walls, fences, corrals, reservoirs, and other structures that could be archaeologically or architecturally significant.

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Community outreach will include consultations with residents of nearby residential subdivisions, DHHL representatives, or beneficiaries of the nearby Keōkea agricultural lands, and regional representatives of the Aha Moku o Maui Council. A cultural impact assessment may also be required to identify any on-going cultural practices in the area and any potential impacts of the project to these practices.

According to timelines compiled by the company, if approved, construction is projected to begin in April of 2022 and the facility would be operational for commercial generation in April of 2023. The projected life of the project is 25 years.

The proposed project would occupy Tax Map Key (2)2-2-002:001 as well as a portion of TMK (2)2-2-002:050. According to information compiled by the company, the project seeks to interconnect to the circuit associated with the Kealahou-Auwahi line.

According to the company, the lands underlying the project have been designated as “E” by the University of Hawaiʻi, Land Study Bureau, representing lands with the “lowest agricultural productivity.”

During the meeting, the Kamaʻole Solar team will describe details about the project, site maps, planned studies, project timeline, and potential benefits to the community. The public is invited to participate and to provide feedback on this proposed project.

Wendy Osher
Wendy Osher leads the Maui Now news team. She is also the news voice of parent company, Pacific Media Group, having served nearly 20 years as News Director for the company’s six Maui radio stations.

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