Hawaii plans to be completely powered by renewable energy by the year 2045. Kauai, one of its islands, also has its own goal set up, which is to use 70 percent renewable energy by 2030. In order to reach its ambitious goal, the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative power company launched the Kapaia project with the help of Tesla.
The Kapaia project is a combination of a 13MW SolarCity solar farm and 53MWh Tesla Powerpack station located on the island. It will store the energy gathered from the sun during the day and release it at night and should, therefore, reduce the use of fossil fuels by 1.6 million gallons per year.
What’s interesting about the project is that Kauai Island Utility Cooperative didn’t buy the solar panels or the battery system from Tesla. There’s actually a 20-year contract in place to buy the solar-generated power from Tesla for 13.9 cents per kilowatt hour. This means that the company is expanding its operations and is now basically in the power generation business.
This is actually the biggest project since the Tesla and SolarCity merger, as there are exactly 55,000 solar cells spread over about 45 acres. The company also believes that the Kapaia project is the largest combination of solar panel and storage facility in the entire world.