Hawaii received its final shipment of coal before the shuttering of its remaining power plant this fall.
According to Hawaii Public Radio, “The Flying Tiger” cargo ship arrived with the coal at Kalaeloa Barbers Point Harbor on July 27.
AES’s 180 MW West Oahu Plant is the single largest source of electricity on Oahu, the state’s most populous island. The 30-year-old coal-fired plant’s power purchase agreement expires when the calendar turns to September.
This week Hawai‘i is receiving its final shipment of coal. This is a huge step forward in Hawaiʻi’s transition to clean energy. In its time, coal was an important resource for Hawaii and I’d like to thank the workers who have run our last remaining coal plant. pic.twitter.com/ZiorDSda17
— Governor David Ige (@GovHawaii) July 28, 2022
Hawaii aims to replace the plant’s generating capacity with renewables on the way to achieving 100% clean energy by 2045. But AES officials told Hawaii Public Radio supply chain issues and other delays have hindered progress.
“We still have a few curves in the road to negotiate because the short-term challenge here is that as we close this coal plant in September, we don’t have as many renewable projects coming online immediately. And so the reality is that residents here on Oʻahu are going to see higher costs in the short term,” the AES official said.
In a tweet, Hawaii Gov. David Ige said: “Renewable energy projects to replace coal are coming online with more on the way. Even as we face challenges in making this transition, it’s the right move for our communities and planet.”
Coal for the plant had been imported from Indonesia to the Barbers Point Harbor terminal, then delivered to the plant by a 1.6-mile-long conveyor system.
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