Community meeting

PGV Hosting Community Meeting on Project, EIS Prep

The Puna Geothermal Venture plant located in Pohoiki in the lower part of Puna. PC: PGV.

Puna Geothermal Venture will host a community meeting on Wednesday, August 17 from 5-8 p.m. at the Pāhoa Neighborhood Facility, 15-2906 Pāhoa Village Road.

The meeting will provide background information and an opportunity for the public to comment on PGV’s Environmental Impact Statement Preparation Notice, or EISPN. This is the first step in the process of preparing an environmental impact assessment, EIA.

On March 16, the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) approved an amended contract between PGV and Hawaiian Electric, conditional on an environmental review under the Hawaii Environmental Policy Act being completed. An EIA has been identified as the appropriate environmental document, and the Hawai’i County Planning Department has been designated as the approving agency for the EIA.

The session will start with an informative open house from 5-6pm, and from 6-8pm oral comments will be accepted (to be recorded via audio and video). The substantive comments received during the scoping will be addressed in the next phase of the process, which is the preparation of the draft EIS.

“We will provide detailed information and respond to questions about the purpose and content of the ISPN during the first hour of the meeting, followed by public commentary,” said Michael Kaleikini, Ormat Senior Director, Hawaiian Affairs. . “There will be ample time for everyone to comment on the record.”

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The public comment period on the ISPNS is open until August 22. Comments can be made in person at the August 17 meeting or can be submitted in writing, either at the meeting or by email to [email protected] and [email protected]or by mail to Michele Lefebvre, PO Box 191, Hilo, HI 96721 and County of Hawaii Planning Department, Aupuni Center, 101 Pauahi Street, Suite 3, Hilo, HI 96720.

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Pending government approval, PGV and Hawaiian Electric have negotiated an Amended and Restated Power Purchase Agreement (ARPPA) that will regulate power generation at the PGV plant until 2052.

ARPPA proposes to replace the 12 power generation units currently in service with up to four modernized power generation units (Repower project). The Repower project would be built inside the current PGV facility fence line, replace current units with more efficient and quieter equipment, increase the capacity of the geothermal plant from 38 to 46 megawatts, and decouple prices oil cost energy without escalation. . The EIA will examine the environmental impacts of ARPPA and the Repower project.

Under state law, the first step in the EIA process is the preparation of an EISPN to initiate a public review and identify environmental concerns. The complete file is available here.

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There will be an additional meeting and other public comment opportunities as part of the process following the release of the draft EIS. More information is available at: https://punageothermalproject.com/eis/

PGV, a subsidiary of Ormat Technologies, the world leader in geothermal energy, currently produces between 25 and 26 megawatts of energy for the island of Hawaii.

“Under the amended agreement, we will be able to generate clean energy more efficiently for the island of Hawaii. Geothermal energy is a solid source of renewable energy and is a key element in achieving the objective 100% clean energy state by 2045,” Kaleikini said.

Puna Geothermal Venture has been generating electricity from geothermal resources since 1993. Prior to the 2018 eruption, it provided over 38 megawatts of electricity. PGV was acquired by Ormat Technologies in 2004. Ormat provides clean and reliable energy solutions from geothermal and recovered energy as well as energy management and storage solutions. Its US operations are based in Reno, Nevada.