Thursday, October 28, 2010

State’s Largest Concentrating Solar Power Project Celebrates Ground Blessing on Hawaiian Homelands

HONOLULU – A ground blessing ceremony was held today in Kalaeloa, O‘ahu for the largest Micro-scaled Concentrating Solar Power (MicroCSP) project in the State of Hawai‘i. The Kalaeloa Solar One project will produce 5 megawatts of renewable energy for the island of Oahu. Earlier this year, Keahole Solar Power (KSP) partnered with the State Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL) to lease land in Kalaeloa to establish a home base for this project.

“Today’s ground blessing marks a tremendous step forward for DHHL and the State of Hawai‘i in implementing the Lingle-Aiona Administration’s Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative,” said Kaulana H.R. Park, chairman of the Hawaiian Homes Commission.

“This project not only supplies clean renewable energy for Hawai‘i, but also helps our native Hawaiian beneficiaries. Our partnership with Kalaeloa Solar One and KSP will provide DHHL with rent monies which will in turn be used to build homes and fund educational programs for native Hawaiians.”

“Cost effective Concentrating Solar Power and its energy efficient storage has been proven in Hawai‘i to help reduce energy volatility solving a key problem found in most renewable systems,” said Edward Lui, independent director of KSP. “KSP is proud to bring MicroCSP to Hawai‘i, helping our home become a model for renewable energy around the world. We thank our partners, community supporters and staff in helping keep Hawai‘i green and reduce our addiction to imported oil.”

“The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands is taking the lead in creating sustainable, energy efficient communities for native Hawaiians and our entire community,” said Governor Linda Lingle. “This partnership with Keahole Solar Power will utilize leading
edge technology developed by a local company that will further position Hawai‘i as a world leader in clean energy.”

“We are making significant progress in transforming Hawai‘i into a true leader for clean and sustainable energy,” said Lt. Governor Aiona. “This innovative and collaborative program with the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and Keahole Solar Power is
contributing to Hawaii’s long-term clean energy economy.”

The Kalaeloa Solar One’s MicroCSP technology uses mirrored reflectors and optics to intensify solar energy, which in turn increases the system’s energy efficiency. The solar panels track the sun throughout the day which increases the amount of energy the
system produces annually and the system includes thermal storage which enables energy to be produced during cloudy conditions or at night.

The project is estimated for completion by the third quarter of 2011.

Submitted by the Department of Hawaiian Homelands

Thursday, October 21, 2010

USDA Finalizing Rules for Biomass Crop Assistance Program

USDA Finalizes Rules for Biomass Crop Assistance Program
Submitted by eBoom Staff on October 21, 2010
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) laid out its final rule provisions for the Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) outlining detailed qualifications for the aggressive incentives for biomass crop and energy producers.
BCAP, was created as part part of the 2008 Farm Bill to help US farmers and bioenergy producers meet the federal Renewable Fuels Standard, requiring 36 billion gallons of advanced biofuel in the national fuel supply by 2022.
The press release summarized the rules:
Crop producers and bioenergy producers will be able to team together to submit applications to USDA to be selected as a BCAP project area.
If selected, crop producers will be eligible for reimbursements of up to 75 percent of the cost of establishing a bioenergy perennial crop. Producers also can receive up to 5 years of annual payments for grassy crops (annual or perennial), and up to 15 years of annual payments for woody crops (annual or perennial).
Assistance for the collection, harvest, storage and transportation of biomass to biomass conversion facilities will be available for 2 years, per producer, in the form of a matching payment for up to $45 per ton of the delivery cost to the facility.
The total expenditures expected over the next 15 years is USD$461 million in matching payments. Farmers and bioenergy producers like POET have been anxiously waiting for the finalized provisions.
In a response to the final USDA rule Jim Sturdevant, Director of Project LIBERTY for POET, said, "The 85 farmers we have contracted with to deliver 56,000 tons of biomass this fall are nearly finished harvesting, so the final BCAP rule comes not a day too soon. We will now apply for our cellulosic ethanol plant to become an approved Biomass Conversion Facility (BCF) so that local farmers can become eligible for matching payments for the biomass they will soon deliver."
Image Credit: poetpics via Flickr
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