Hawaiian Electric Co. will deactivate its Honolulu Power Plant in January as part of its strategy to increase the use of renewable energy and reduce Hawaii’s dependency on imported fossil fuel.
The move is part of a plan to deactivate a total of 226 megawatts of utility-owned generation by 2016, which HECO outlined in its latest Integrated Resource Plan filed with the Public Utilities Commission at the end of June. HECO’s original announcement in June did not give specific dates for the deactivation of the various power plants.
“Deactivation” means the power plant will no longer be available for routine service. However, if necessary to avoid a power shortage to customers and with appropriate preparation, deactivated units could be restored to operation. By contrast, “retirement” or “decommission” means a generating unit is permanently removed from service and no longer available under any circumstances.
Honolulu Power Plant, located across the street from Aloha Tower Marketplace, went into service in 1954. The plant’s two remaining oil-fired generating units have a combined generating capacity of 113 megawatts.
“For nearly 60 years, they have played key roles in meeting Oahu’s energy needs during periods of significant growth on the island and in assuring safe, reliable electric service in downtown Honolulu,” according to a news release from HECO.