Skip to content

Senator Hirono Highlights Hawaii’s Continued Efforts to Expand Renewable Energy

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today during a hearing of the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee’s Subcommittee on Energy, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) highlighted ongoing efforts in Hawaii to adopt sustainable energy sources and reaffirmed her support for S. 1593, the Promoting Grid Storage Act of 2019, which would provide federal resources to support research, development, and deployment of energy storage systems, including assistance to local organizations to identify and design energy storage systems. Senator Hirono is an original cosponsor of the Promoting Grid Storage Act.

During her remarks, Senator Hirono specifically noted the success of the Lawai Solar Energy Plus Storage Facility on Kauai, currently the largest solar generation plus storage project in the world.

From Senator Hirono’s remarks:

“In April, I visited the Lawai solar and storage facility on Kauai Island. It is the largest combined solar and battery storage facility in the world. It generates 11 percent of Kauai’s power, and can serve as much of 40 percent of the evening peak-power demand on the island for Kauai Island Utility Cooperative. Hawaiian Electric is also pursuing six new combined solar and storage projects on other islands, enough to serve 105,000 homes. Hawaii is on the leading edge of energy storage and finding ways to cut pollution and use high amounts of renewable power. Kauai is already at 50 percent renewable power, and we are at 27 percent statewide.

“I think we need a similar focus nationwide, which is why I am pleased to co-sponsor one of the bills we are considering today, S. 1593, the Promoting Grid Storage Act of 2019, introduced by Senator Smith. It will provide over $1 billion over five years to accelerate the research development and demonstration of energy storage technologies, while helping organizations or communities design and develop energy storage systems to meet their needs.”

Senator Hirono is also a cosponsor of S. 1142, the Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act of 2019, which would provide a 30 percent federal tax credit for the purchase of energy storage systems. In May, Senator Hirono, along with 25 of her U.S. Senate colleagues, introduced S.1288, the Clean Energy for America Act. The bill would reform the federal tax code as part of a plan to support a low-carbon economy by consolidating the current 44 energy incentives into three technology-neutral provisions that encourage clean electricity, clean transportation, and energy efficiency while repealing tax incentives for fossil fuel companies