Pacific Biodiesel to supply fuel to new Schofield power plant

By Ron Kotrba | November 14, 2017

Hawaiian Electric Co. and Pacific Biodiesel Technologies signed a three-year biodiesel supply contract for the new 50-megawatt Schofield Generating Station, 8-megawatt Honolulu International Airport Emergency Power Facility, and other Oahu generation facilities.

Set to go into effect in 2018, the contract calls for Pacific Biodiesel Technologies to supply between 2 and 4 MMgy of biodiesel produced at its 5.5 MMgy production facility on the Big Island of Hawaii via barge to the island of Oahu, where the fuel will be trucked to the utility’s various sites.  

Pacific Biodiesel currently supplies biodiesel to Hawaiian Electric’s Campbell Industrial Park generation station and the airport emergency facility owned by the state and operated by the utility.

The new Schofield plant, which broke ground in August 2016 and is expected to be fully operational early next year, will use a mixture of biodiesel and petroleum diesel in six Wärtsilä 34DF engines.

“The new technology at our Big Island refinery enables us to process the highest quality biodiesel available in the United States,” said Bob King, president of Pacific Biodiesel. “With this new contract, Hawaiian Electric is ensuring the continuous operation of the Keaau facility, and job security for 80 Pacific Biodiesel employees statewide. More than any other renewable energy model, locally produced biodiesel provides green jobs, energy security, consistent greenhouse gas reduction and direct displacement of fossil fuels.”

Ron Cox, Hawaiian Electric senior vice president of operations, said, “This new contract accomplishes our goal of using locally produced biofuel to the greatest extent possible. In addition, fuel for our power plants under this new contract will be lower priced than we now pay for biodiesel.”

“We are happy to continue supplying high-quality locally made biodiesel to HECO in support of its clean energy goals,” King told Biodiesel Magazine. “It is gratifying that HECO continues to support locally produced biodiesel and extremely important to Hawaii’s energy security. Now is the time to invest in biofuel infrastructure—the contract makes it possible to move forward towards Hawaii’s 100 percent renewable goals with biodiesel as the best firm renewable back-up to wind and solar.” 

The contract is subject to approval by the state Public Utilities Commission. 


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