Earlier this year, Governor Lingle announced a new initiative aimed at weaning Hawaii off of fossil fuels and incentivizing more households to consider solar power and other forms of alternative energy. Modeled after other programs now in place in 15 other states and nearly 30 municipalities, the state’s Clean Energy Emphasis aims to grow jobs in green industries through renewable energy incentives.<br/><br/> Last year, close to 10,000 homeowners in Hawaii went with solar water heaters or photovoltaic rooftop systems. The goal is 70 percent clean energy by 2030 and that is just 20 years away.<br/><br/> Under the proposed plan, households who do not have cash upfront can purchase solar systems with floating government bonds and pay the bill later through their property taxes. The thought behind the green jobs: As the solar customer base grows, so will the solar workforce. <br/><br/> Jeffrey Mikulina, executive director of Hawaii-based Blue Planet Foundation, was a guest on Hawaii Public Radio’s Energy Futures program recently, where he made the case for Governor Lingle’s Clean Energy Investment Bonds, also known as Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE). Listen to the segment here [24:50-30:32].<br/><br/> PACE is a terrific way for commercial and residential property owners to install solar systems and make other energy efficiency upgrades with no upfront cost. Find out more about PACE here. <br/>
Sunetric Blog: Hawaii Solar News & Updates
Monthly Archives: February 2010
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
The United States Department of Energy recently made a colossal stand to get behind what would be the world’s largest solar plant.
In an unprecedented move, the DOE offered a $1.4 billion loan guarantee from stimulus funds to BrightSource Energy, backed by Google and other companies, to build its Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System – a large-scale solar power plant in California’s Mojave Desert.
In a statement published in the New York Times on the decision, Energy Secretary Steven Chu said, “We’re not going to sit on the sidelines while other countries capture the jobs of the future — we’re committed to becoming the global leader in the clean energy economy.” The Obama administration predicts the solar power plant will employ about 1,000 people.
Invanpah would use solar thermal technology, deploying thousands of mirrors or heliostats to focus the sun on three towers, each containing a boiler filled with water. Electricity would then be generated by a turbine propelled by the focused heat of the boilers.
Read more about the investment.
Monday, February 8, 2010
Alex Tiller has been named CEO of Sunetric, Hawaii’s largest locally owned-and-operated solar company. Tiller will oversee all business operations and spearhead a suite of organizational and structural initiatives focused on growth and sustainability for 2010 and beyond.
“Alex is perfect as our new CEO,” explained Sean Mullen, founder of Sunetric. “Sunetric is growing so fast that we needed someone who knew our company and could give us 100% of their energy in order to guide us into the future. It’s an exciting time for the solar industry and I’m confident that Alex, with his background and vision, is the right person to take us to new horizons.”
Tiller, who currently resides in Honolulu with his wife, initially joined Sunetric Capital as a managing partner in early 2009. He has nearly two decades of strategic business development experience in the financial services and high-technology fields, including launching a tech startup in 2002; management at Fidelity Investments; consulting for hedge funds; and developing a private equity offering that focused on agriculture and sustainability.
“We have a great team at Sunetric and my goal is to help them succeed by providing the tools and guidance they need to shine,” said Tiller. ”Sean has done an amazing job. He is a solar expert – he single-handedly developed and grew Sunetric, jump-starting the solar industry in Hawaii. I think that we are all looking forward to letting Sean get back to being a forward-thinking innovator of renewable energy while I focus on the business aspect of the company.”
Sean Mullen, the founding partner of Sunetric, will head up Sunetric’s commercial and government business unit including sales, design, engineering, research and development, as well as project construction.
Click here to read Tiller’s announcement in Pacific Business News.
On the web:
Saturday, February 6, 2010
Sunetric’s Watt Wheels mobile solar energy station will provide free electricity for the Waterman League’s World Tour: Sunset Beach Pro Stand-Up Paddle. This three-day North Shore event occurs during the best ocean conditions within the holding period, Saturday, February 6 through Saturday, February 13, 2010.
Watt Wheels will provide quiet, clean power for the PA system, computers, printers, phones, etc. These items usually require a gasoline-powered generator that releases noxious gases into the atmosphere and also causes noise pollution. Watt Wheels will also help the environment at the Na Kama Kai clinic, by providing solar power on Sunday, February 14 from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Kapiolani Park bandstand in Waikiki. The clinic teaches ocean awareness and safety to keiki in the community through cultural and environmental instruction.
“Our philosophy is to preserve a lifestyle which is powered by nature, as well as to support renewable energy which, in turn, will keep our environment clean,” explains Tristan Boxford, CEO of Waterman League. “We’re thrilled to work with the people at Sunetric who are positively changing our environment.”
Check out photos from the competition and the nod to Sunetric in Stand Up Paddle Surfing Magazine.
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Kona Brewing Company recently announced it has signed a contract with Sunetric to install a 229 kW solar energy generating system at its Kailua-Kona brewery and pub on Hawaii’s Big Island. Construction has begun on the system, and it is expected to be fully operational by April, 2010.
The project, a roof-mounted grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) system, is estimated to produce an average of 900 kWh of electricity each day, which will allow Kona Brewing Company nearly 60 percent offset of its current electricity usage. It will include 880 260-watt solar modules on the brewery’s rooftop space. At the entrance to the restaurant, Kona Brewing Company guests will be able to check out a real-time monitor that shows how much energy the solar system is generating. At the current commercial retail electricity rate, the system will offset more than $100,000 in Kona Brewing Company’s electricity expenditures per year.
PV solar energy is a clean and renewable energy source. It does not pollute or consume natural resources. Sunetric estimates that over the next 30 years Kona Brewing Company’s PV system will prevent approximately 7,730 tons of carbon dioxide emissions from entering the atmosphere annually, or about 5 million car trips to a local grocery store. The solar array offsets 16,425 barrels of oil that would otherwise be burned to make electricity during the next 30 years.
Watch Sunetric’s Alex Tiller and Kona Brewery’s Mattson Davis discuss the partnership on KHON, Channel 2.
On The Web: