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Hawaiian Electric Co. (HECO) says it has asked the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to waive a competitive-bid requirement in order to quickly negotiate with five "low-cost" renewable energy projects in Oahu.

If the PUC approves, HECO will negotiate power purchase agreements (PPAs) directly with the developers of the five projects, which include a mix of solar and wind technologies across Oahu with a combined capacity of 64 MW. HECO anticipates negotiating long term, 20-year contracts with each project.

Combined, the projects have committed to sell electricity to HECO at an average price of $0.159/kWh. The utility says this is about one-third less than prices paid to existing solar and wind energy projects on Oahu and the current cost of generating electricity from oil. After PPAs are negotiated, each one must be submitted to the PUC for individual review and approval before it goes forward.


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