Governor Abercrombie Signs Bills Related to Energy and Technology

Focusing on two of his administration’s priority issues, Gov. Neil Abercrombie today signed several bills that advance Hawaii’s energy and technology goals.

Senator Glenn Wakai shared the following picture on his Facebook account

Senator Glenn Wakai shared the following picture on his Facebook account

Upon enacting four measures related to energy, Gov. Abercrombie stated: “We are removing unnecessary barriers to allow a greater segment of our community to invest in and benefit from renewable energy. These bills also improve the efficiency of the industry’s registration and reporting process, while encouraging greater openness and expanding protections for our local communities.”

HB811 (Relating to Energy Information Reporting) simplifies the registration and reporting process for fuel distributors. Part of the Governor’s legislative package, the bill also amends Public Utilities Commission (PUC) responsibilities and powers in relation to energy industry information reporting and allows the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism to receive energy industry information.

HB1405 (Relating to the Public Utilities Commission) requires the PUC to include a summary of the power purchase agreements in effect during the fiscal year in its annual report to the Governor. It also expands the use of the public benefits fee to support clean energy technology, demand response technology, energy use reduction, and demand-side management infrastructure.

SB19 (Relating to Renewable Energy) removes barriers for landlords to invest in renewable energy and allows renters/tenants to benefit from lower energy costs. The bill exempts landlords and lessors who install renewable energy systems on their property and provide, sell or transmit electricity generated from those systems to tenants or lessees.

HB1149 (Relating to Wind Energy Facilities) requires a wind energy facility owner to be responsible for facility decommissioning and provide evidence of financial security unless the owner has an existing lease or other agreement that provides for decommissioning. The bill establishes standards and assurances of adequate financial resources to avoid abandoned or neglected wind energy facilities.

Regarding three of the bills related to technology, the Governor said: “Technology is ever-changing, and state government needs to change with it. An open government helps citizens be engaged in their government and further promotes government accountability and transparency.”

HB632 (Relating to Open Data) requires state departments to make electronic data sets available to the public. The bill also requires the chief information officer (CIO) to develop policies and procedures to implement the Open Data Initiative, and appropriates $100,000 each fiscal year of the biennium to Office of Information Practices (OIP).

HB635 (Relating to Broadband) requires the state and counties to take action in advancing the Hawaii Broadband Initiative within 60 days (for conservation districts, the state must take action within 145 days). The initiative’s goal is to provide ultra high-speed Internet access by 2018, and this clear and decisive timeline will reduce uncertainty for broadband companies and serve as an incentive to invest in increased bandwidth.

SB1003 (Relating to Information Technology), another of the administration’s bills, authorizes the CIO to conduct security audits and direct remedial actions, as necessary, in the management of the state’s cyber security.

“As these resources come online, cyber security will become even more critical, and these measures include steps to further secure the people’s data,” the Governor added.

 

Guy Toyama Memorial Fund to Spur Sustainability and Entrepreneurship on the Big Island

 A new memorial fund seeks to raise $1 million to honor the life and legacy of Hawaii visionary, Guy Toyama. Sustainability grants and scholarships will foster positive change worldwide.

The Guy Toyama Memorial Fund seeks to advance innovation and entrepreneurship in areas of environmentally sound practices in Hawaii and around the world.

Guy Toyama gave a presentation at the 2012 Sam Choy's Keauhou Poke Contest

Guy Toyama gave a presentation at the 2012 Sam Choy’s Keauhou Poke Contest

The Fund will provide scholarships for students interested in sustainability and entrepreneurship. In addition, the fund will provide grants for non-profit projects focused on innovation and sustainability integration. The fund will create positive outcomes for future generations through disciplines such as renewable energy, local food production, and waste reduction.

Guy Toyama, a Hawaii visionary and champion of sustainable business and renewable energy, passed away in November of 2012. In honor of his longstanding commitment to improving the relationship between people and the islands, his never-ending spirit of kuleana will be carried on through the Guy Toyama Memorial Fund.

All who knew Guy were touched by his enthusiasm for life and his many passions. His joyful exuberance and his exceptional knowledge of how to live lightly on the planet were a source of inspiration to many. This memorial fund, made possible by donations from friends, family, and businesses, furthers Guy’s global vision for a better future.

“Guy’s gift of generosity and his passion for positive social and environmental change were contagious. The memorial fund celebrates his enthusiasm and his unending dedication to the community,” said Debbie Baker, President of the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce.

The late Guy Toyama shows off his award winning Abalone Poke.

The late Guy Toyama shows off his award winning Abalone Poke.

Initially, the fund will focus on Hawaii Island and the state of Hawaii. Donor support may allow the fund to expand its efforts globally. A fundraising pau hana kickoff event for the fund is planned for Friday April 26, 2013 from 4:00pm – 7:00pm at the Gateway Energy Center near the entrance of the Natural Energy Laboratory Hawaii Authority (NELHA).

“Guy lived his life with a deep sense of kuleana, and he treated everyone with aloha. He made everyone he touched believe that we can solve our problems and live and work in harmony with each other and nature,” said Walter Kunitake, President of the Kona Japanese Civic Association.

Friends of the Future, a Hawaii 501(c)3 non-profit organization, is accepting contributions to the Fund. Checks should be made payable to Friends of the Future, include “Guy Toyama Memorial Fund” in the memo line, and be mailed to Friends of the Future, PO Box 2655, Kamuela, HI 96743. Visit www.fofhawaii.org and click on the DONATE link to contribute online using PayPal or a credit card. Include “Guy Toyama Memorial Fund” in the “note to seller” field when you review the PayPal transaction. Requests for additional information can be addressed to info@guytoyamafund.org.

Walmart Expands Solar Installations in Hawaii

Kahului, Kailua-Kona and Kapolei Walmart stores now receive solar power

Walmart and SunEdison today announced the completion of new solar power installations in the islands at three Walmart stores in Kahului, Kailua-Kona and Kapolei, doubling the total number of stores in Hawaii powered by renewable solar energy. The installations contribute to the company’s broader aspirational goal of being supplied 100 percent by renewable energy. Similar installations are already in operation atop the Honolulu Sam’s Club and Mililani Walmart on Oahu, and the Lihue Walmart on Kauai.

Walmart Kona

During the first full year of production, the 311 kilowatt solar power rooftop system on each store will produce more than 400,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of solar electricity. Each rooftop system will eliminate 320 metric tons of CO2e annually. That means the three systems combined, over a 10-year period will eliminate 9600 metric tons. One year of operation for each rooftop system is equivalent to removing 67 cars off the road for one year. That means the three systems combined will remove the equivalent of 2,010 cars over a 10-year period.

‘We are committed to making decisions that are not only good for business and the environment, but also allow us to pass on savings to our customers,’ said Rey Armijo, Hawaii Market Manager for Walmart. ‘We’re excited about the expansion of our solar program in the islands and this important step towards our goal of being supplied 100 percent by renewable energy.’

‘Fantastic!  I congratulate Walmart for making this wise decision to reduce their electricity bills and do good for the environment through solar PV,’ said Senate Energy & Environment Committee Chair and State Senator Mike Gabbard.

Learn more about Walmart’s commitment to sustainability at The Green Room and follow us on Twitter (@WalmartGreen) to get updates about sustainability efforts and milestones. Additional information about our commitment to renewable energy is also available on our website.

 

 

Hawaii Legislature Takes Steps to Make Renewable Energy Accessible For All

The House Committees on Energy & Environmental Protection and Consumer Protection & Commerce held a joint informational briefing with the Senate Committees on Energy and Environment and Commerce and Consumer Protection to provide an update on the creation of an on-bill renewable energy financing program for the state.

capital

On-bill renewable energy financing would provide homeowners, renters, and those who currently cannot afford renewable energy the option to go green while immediately lowering their electric bills. Renewable options such as solar photovoltaic will be financed and installed through this program, and residents will pay it down through their electric bills, which will immediately drop in cost by at least twenty percent. After 15 years, residents will own their systems.

Several bills to establish finance mechanisms for the first-of-its-kind program, including HB497 and HB865, are currently advancing through both chambers. Experts say they have the potential to eventually bring billions of dollars in renewable energy investment to Hawaii.

Internationally recognized expert in renewable energy financing, Cisco DeVries joined members of the Committees and industry stakeholders for the briefing. Mr. DeVries is President of Renewable Funding, which designs, administers and finances clean energy programs to state and local governments as well as the private sector – in the United States and abroad. In his presentation he observed that the program Hawaii is developing to finance clean energy is one of the most innovative approaches he has seen.

“Today you are laying the groundwork for a model that will not only solve your clean energy goals but will be replicated throughout the country,” said Mr. DeVries.

“This is a game-changer that will make renewable energy available to the masses,” said House Committee on Energy & Environmental Protection Chair Chris Lee (Kailua, Waimanalo).

 

State Aims to Make Renewable Energy Accessible and Affordable for All

State Aims to Make Renewable Energy Accessible and Affordable for All, On-bill financing would open the renewable market to renters and low-income residents

capital

WHAT:  The House Committees on Energy & Environmental Protection and Consumer Protection & Commerce will hold a joint informational briefing with the Senate Committees on Energy and Environment and Commerce and Consumer Protection to provide an update on the creation of an on-bill renewable energy financing program for the state.

WHEN:  Thursday, February 21, 2013, 1:00 P.M.

WHERE:  Hawaii State Capitol Auditorium

WHY:  On-bill renewable energy financing will make low-interest financing available to Hawaii’s renters and residents who have been unable to afford the existing cost of distributed renewable energy technologies. A related measure could take the next big step forward and provide significant capital in low-interest financing to help homeowners and renters cover the upfront costs of solar photovoltaic and other renewable technologies.

WHO:  Internationally recognized expert in renewable energy financing, Cisco DeVries will join members of the Committees and industry stakeholders for the briefing. Mr. DeVries is President of Renewable Funding, which designs, administers and finances clean energy programs to state and local governments as well as the private sector – in the United States and abroad.

 

Renewable Energy Tax Credit Reform Bill Advances in House

The House Committee on Energy & Environmental Protection (EEP) adopted HB497, which will serve as the vehicle to thoroughly address the issue of using tax credits to maintain economic expansion and further promote renewable energy in a fiscally equitable way.

capital

Under the proposed legislation, solar hot water incentives would remain a priority, with the tax credit cap for a single family dwelling increasing to $2500 per household and $500 per unit for multi-family residential properties. Small wind projects (1 Megawatt or less) would be unaffected.

The tax credit for photovoltaic systems will be incrementally phased down from 30 percent of the actual cost to 15 percent over the next 5 years. At that point, the Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT) will provide a cost-benefit analysis of the incentive and help determine its future.

“What we’ve done here, is taken input from stakeholders on all sides of the issue to come up with a comprehensive solution that keeps the economy growing and continues to expand access to renewable energy in a fiscally responsible manner,” said EEP Chair Chris Lee (Kailua, Waimanalo).

The measure will now advance to the Committee on Commerce and Consumer Affairs.

 

Ulupono Initiative, SolarCity Partner to Invest $15 Million to Finance Local Solar Power Projects

Ulupono Initiative, a for-profit impact investment firm, is investing a total of $15 million over the next year to finance SolarCity solar power projects in Hawai‘i. The partnership is expected to increase Hawaii’s solar power generation by approximately five percent, and can be expanded over time.

“Ulupono is investing in this partnership with SolarCity to bring affordable solar power to local customers that can help them manage their rising utility bills,” said Kyle Datta, general partner of Ulupono Initiative. “We see SolarCity as a strong, nationally-recognized partner with a world-class supply chain that is committed to hiring locally, and is well-positioned to help further our work to decrease Hawai‘i’s dependence on outside sources for the state’s energy needs.”

“We’re truly excited about this collaboration, which will provide local financing to help customers in Hawai’i protect themselves from rising electricity costs through clean, homegrown energy provided by SolarCity’s local workforce,” added Jon Yoshimura, director of government affairs for SolarCity. “Solar makes sense in Hawai’i and the partnerships with Ulupono Initiative will make it more affordable and accessible.”

“As we work to accelerate renewable energy in Hawai‘i, we’re identifying ways to use available incentives to help attract more institutional capital to innovative projects like these,” said Murray Clay, managing director of Ulupono Initiative. “Our hope is that this will catalyze others to replicate this structure. We believe this can expand solar development in Hawai‘i to increase renewable power generation to help meet the State’s energy goals.”

About Ulupono Initiative

Ulupono Initiative LLC is a for-profit impact investment firm that strives to improve the quality of life for the people of Hawai‘i by working toward solutions that create more locally grown food, increase clean renewable energy production and reduce waste. For more information about Ulupono Initiative, please visit www.uluponoinitiative.com.

About SolarCity Hawai’i

SolarCity® provides Hawai’i homeowners, business and government organizations cleaner, more affordable alternatives to their utility bills from its local operations center in Mililani. The company makes it simple for customers to lock in lower, long-term rates for clean energy by providing everything from permitting and installation to ongoing monitoring and maintenance. Additional information about the company’s operations in Hawai’i is available on the Web at http://www.solarcity.com/states/hi/hawaii.aspx.

Congresswoman Hirono Calls for National Renewable Energy and Efficiency Standard

Congresswoman Mazie K. Hirono rallied energy leaders at the Asia-Pacific Clean Energy Summit in Honolulu.

She wants more accountability from politicians in Washington who are holding back our clean energy future and support a national energy policy modeled on the clean energy successes of the U.S. military by instituting a national renewable energy and efficiency standard.

[youtube=http://youtu.be/7L8licIyUEA]

Congresswoman Hirono delivered her keynote speech on August 15, the last day of the summit

Mayor’s Office Announces Student Mālama Award Winners

The Office of Mayor Billy Kenoi is pleased to announce the winners of the first Hawai‘i Island Student Mālama Award, a program that highlights and celebrates student stewards of sustainability on Hawai‘i Island. Outstanding student leaders and groups in this field will be awarded $500 scholarships.

Mayor Kenoi spoke at the morning’s Mayor’s Breakfast Fellowship and said the following on his Facebook page, “Mahalo to the Exchange Club of Hilo for a morning of food, friends, song, and prayer at the this morning’s Mayor’s Breakfast Fellowship!”

Eligible projects included, but were not limited to topics such as renewable energy and energy efficiency; agriculture, such as school gardens and local foods; resource management, such as zero waste; community-based volunteerism, social and community service; and environmental projects, such as conservation and preservation of the ocean, land and forest.

Click for application form

Scholarships will be awarded to winners in K-5, 6-8 and 9-12 grade categories. The following is the list of winners in each grade category:

Elementary:  Kahakai Elementary Green Team

Intermediate:  Kua O Ka La Intermediate School Hui Lokahi

High School:  Makana Agcaoili, Pahoa Intermediate and High School Green Club President

“Mahalo to all the students, schools, teachers, families, and community members who supported this year’s projects,” said Mayor Billy Kenoi. “We look forward to honoring more great projects that mālama our unique and beautiful home, Hawai’i Island.”

Mayor Kenoi Unveils Geothermal Working Group Report

Hawai‘i Island is rich in resources to address our energy needs. All that is needed is cooperation and initiative to make the move to 100% renewable energy, agreed all the speakers at the unveiling of the Geothermal Working Group’s final report today at Mayor Billy Kenoi’s office.

“Hawai‘i County should aim and commit to being 100 percent renewable. Federal, state, county, community, we’re all in this together. We all recognize our commitment to our children and future generations and the quality of life on Hawai‘i Island.”

“Hawai‘i County should aim and commit to being 100 percent renewable,” Mayor Kenoi said. “Federal, state, county, community, we’re all in this together. We all recognize our commitment to our children and future generations and the quality of life on Hawai‘i Island.”

[youtube=http://youtu.be/N2_Ve-s-qmU]

At the urging of the Hawai‘i State Legislature – Sen. Gil Kahele and Rep. Mark Nakashima were present and gave remarks at the unveiling – Hawai‘i County convened the Geothermal Working Group to map assets, discuss, examine, and make proposals to maximize geothermal energy toward the goal of making Hawai‘i Island and the State of Hawai‘i the leaders in renewable energy.

“On this island we spend over a billion dollars every year to import oil for our energy needs here on the island,” said Wallace Ishibashi, co-chair of the Geothermal Working Group. “That money can stay right here to build a better community.”

The group’s mission was to evaluate geothermal energy as the primary source of baseload power on Hawai‘i Island – that is, power that is reliably generated at a constant level. Though all renewable energy technologies do and will continue to play a role in Hawai‘i’s energy future, many renewable energy technologies such as solar and wind are not viable candidates to supply baseload power because of the fluctuating nature of their production.

Geothermal, however, has proven a very stable supply of power. Puna Geothermal Ventures’ 30 MW plant provides between 25 and 30% of the electricity on Hawai‘i Island. “When the sun doesn’t shine, when the wind doesn’t blow, geothermal is there,” Ishibashi said.

Power demand on Hawai‘i Island ranges between 90 and 185 MW. Geothermal power potential on Hawai‘i Island has been estimated at between 500 and 700 megawatts, according to the report.

The report recommends that government play a more active role in the facilitation of geothermal development with a review of the permitting process, regulatory capabilities, and possible investment incentives. The report also suggests establishing a community advisory board to guide the use of geothermal royalties paid by geothermal energy producers.

Under state law, royalties paid by Hawai‘i Island geothermal energy producers are shared amongst the state Department of Land and Natural Resources (50%), the County of Hawai‘i (30%), and the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs (20%). The highest annual royalties to date were paid in 2009, a total of $3.1 million.

Mayor Kenoi spoke with Lt. Governor Brian Schatz shortly before the unveiling of the Working Group’s report, and he reported that both Governor Neil Abercrombie as well as the Lt. Governor reiterated their commitment to move forward, to remove barriers, to facilitate investment to maximize geothermal’s potential.

For a full copy of the report, click here: Geothermal Working Group Report

Hawaii’s New $7 Million Federal Grants Aim to Increase Solar and Renewable Energy Integration Into Electric Grids

The State of Hawai’i was awarded more than $7 million in federal grants for renewable energy projects that include increasing solar energy and electric vehicles in Hawai’i, Governor Neil Abercrombie announced at today’s opening of the 2011 Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit and Expo.

The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced the following grants:
  • $6.1 million to the University of Hawai’i (UH) to work with industry partners to allow the electric grid to take on more solar energy by developing and demonstrating state of the art photovoltaic (PV) inverters
  • $750,000 to state Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (DBEDT) to provide technical assistance to the Public Utilities Commission and ultimately help remove barriers to allow for more renewable energy on the electric grid
  • $300,000 to the UH Maui College in partnership with DBEDT and private industry to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles in Hawai’i
“To move beyond just talking about energy independence in Hawai’i, many people are now doing the intricate and necessary technical work behind the scenes,” Governor Abercrombie said. “The partnerships we are building among government agencies, utilities and private companies are advancing our plans to grow a sustainable economy here in the islands. And our strong alignment with President Obama’s clean energy initiatives opens up new opportunities for Hawai’i agencies, companies, and entrepreneurs.”
The number of PV systems, which generate electricity from sunlight, has doubled in each of the last three years, making Hawai’i second in the nation in photovoltaic per capita use. The two federal grants received by DBEDT and UH will help improve the reliability of the electricity delivery system as we continue to expand our use of renewable energy sources. Right now, electricity is generated when the sun is shining or the wind is blowing. The projects will address both technical and regulatory changes to address the variability of solar power and other renewable energy.
“The technology developed through these grants has the potential to facilitate a broader adoption of PV systems at lower costs,” said Dr. Rick Rocheleau, Director of UH’s Hawai’i Natural Energy Institute (HNEI).
“These grants are important investments in Hawai’i’s efforts to move toward energy independence,” said Estrella Seese, Acting Energy Program Administrator of DBEDT’s State Energy Office. “With the many strategic partnerships between state agencies including UH, the USDOE and energy industry, Hawai’i is poised to reduce its dependence on imported fuels within two decades.”
The Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit and Expo, hosted by DBEDT at the Hawai’i Convention Center, is a meeting place for international leaders and energy experts. Over the next three days, the State of Hawai’i and its partners will host a roster of world-renown speakers who will share diverse insights into the implications of advanced renewable energy technologies along with cutting-edge projects, while offering their perspectives on policy issues, and investment and financing opportunities.
This morning’s speakers also included R. James Woolsey, former Central Intelligence Director, and Dr. George Ka’iliwai, U.S. Pacific Command, Director of Resources and Assessment.

Lt. Governor Schatz – “Our Energy Future Is Now”

Aloha everyone,

Your administration is working hard to build a sustainable economy, and the key to that is clean energy.  While we’ve just begun, I’m happy to report that we’re making exciting progress.

We are moving fast on electric vehicles.  Through a federal grant, our Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) is partnering with private companies, and by the end of 2012, Hawai‘i will have more electric vehicle charging stations per capita than any other state.  We are the ideal place for electric cars because of our high gas prices and short driving distances.

We are building international partnerships on energy.  This week Hawai‘i is hosting the Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit, where we expect more than 1,200 local and international clean energy leaders in the government and private sectors to attend along with delegations from more than a dozen countries.  The Governor and I are speaking at this summit to welcome our guests and advance partnerships with key government players and investors in China, Korea, Okinawa, Japan and other countries.

These partnerships are critical to attracting the kind of investment that will be necessary to develop renewable energy opportunities for our state and a sustainable economy.  Any type of investment in Hawai‘i is significant in that it strengthens our economy and provides additional job opportunities for Hawai‘i’s workforce.  This particular kind of investment goes further in that it will enable us to get off of oil that much sooner.  The less oil we consume, the less we all spend each month on gas and electricity and the more money we have in our pockets for other needs.  Hawai‘i’s energy program powers Hawai‘i’s economic growth by attracting the inflow of investment as well as reducing the outflow of dollars from our economy.

We are focusing on Megawatts.  What does that mean? It means that all of this exciting talk is just that – talk – unless we get projects approved, financed, and delivered to customers.  So we are working with all state departments, especially the Public Utilities Commission, to make sure that private clean energy producers can succeed in moving Hawai‘i off of oil. Through DBEDT’s Energy Office, we are also working to facilitate the siting and permitting of clean energy projects to ensure the timely and expeditious completion of these projects.  That means that companies that want to deliver clean energy to your home or business will be doing it, not just talking about it.

There’s a lot more to do, but I am energized by the progress made in our first nine months in office.  The Governor and I are determined to build on this solid foundation going forward.  If you want to know more about the administration’s efforts in energy independence, visit http://energy.hawaii.gov.

Aloha,

Brian Schatz
Lieutenant Governor
ltgov@hawaii.gov

Hawaiian Perspectives on Geothermal Panel Meeting Planned for Maui

Media Release:

WHAT:  The third in a series of community forums and information sessions on geothermal development in Hawaii .

From the Pahoa Geothermal Community Meeting held on April 9th, 2011

The crowd at the Pahoa Geothermal Community Meeting held on April 9th, 2011

The event will feature presentations from Native Hawaiians on community-based models for geothermal development, cultural issues and the protection of cultural resources, OHA’s role in Wao Kele O Puna forest management, the revenue OHA receives from Geothermal development, and native Hawaiian/public ownership of geothermal ‘minerals’ as assets of the ceded land trust. Also to be discussed is the issue of “peak oil” and its impacts to the global and local community.

Patricia Brandt, CEO of Innovations Development Group (IDG)

Patricia Brandt, CEO of Innovations Development Group (IDG) talks to the Pahoa community

WHO: Patricia Brandt, CEO of Innovations Development Group (IDG), a Native Hawaiian company with geothermal projects on Maori Trust lands in New Zealand , will moderate the forum. IDG has a proprietary native model for geothermal development that is firmly rooted in the community. They believe that the community must have a strong voice and stake in the development of public assets. Six native Hawaiian leaders will give presentations (information below). All community members are cordially invited to attend this information session to help ensure that we make the right decisions regarding our energy future.

WHEN: Wednesday, July 20, 2011, 6:30 p.m.

WHERE: Hannibal Tavares (Pukalani) Community Center

91Pukalani St. Pukalani, Maui , HI 96768

Hawaiian experts say that sustainable, domestic energy can fuel the Hawaiian Islands of the future, and replace more costly, dirty and dangerous alternatives like fossil fuels and nuclear energy.

Senator Hanohano and Mililani Trask talk story outside the Pahoa Community Center

Senator Hanohano and Mililani Trask talk story outside the Pahoa Community Center

Now a group of Hawaiian organizations, corporations and noted individuals, including former opponents of the Wao Kele O Puna project like international human rights attorney Mililani Trask, have coordinated a public forum to discuss Community-Based Development of Geothermal Resource

The Community Geothermal Informational Sessions Series began Saturday April 9th in Pahoa. The session was well attended with community members and business leaders coming to learn about geothermal opportunities for Hawai‘i and to share their views. The next community meeting took place in Hilo on May 28th and was deemed informational and productive by those who attended. The series now moves to Maui on July 20th, for a community meeting featuring additional presentations from distinguished guests.

Moderated by IDG CEO Patricia Brandt, the forum’s panelists will include Mililani Trask, Esq. (Indigenous Consultants LLC), Ku’uleiohuokalani Kealoha Cooper (Kealoha Estate), Cy Bridges (IDG Cultural Advisor), Robert Lindsey (Trustee, OHA Hawaii Island), Hulu Lindsey (Lindsey Realty and Kahulu Productions), Richard Ha (Co-Chair, Geothermal Working Group & Hamakua Springs), and Wally Ishibashi (Co-Chair, Geothermal Working Group, Member of Hawaii Labor Alliance).

The Hawaiian Geothermal Community Informational Sessions are sponsored by Kealoha Estate, Indigenous Consultants LLC, Innovations Development Group, Inc., Bob Lindsey, OHA Trustee—Hawaii Island, Kanaka Council Moku O Keawe, Laulima Title Search and Claims.