Hawaiian Ranch Partnering to Build Microgrid

(View of a cattle pasture at Parker Ranch. Photo courtesy Parker Ranch)

A historic cattle ranch is partnering with Go Electric Inc. on a microgrid project to support renewable energy growth and grid resiliency.

Parker Ranch, one of the largest and longest-lived cattle operations in the U.S., has awarded Go Electric with a contract to design and construct a 400-kW microgrid on-site. Work will begin later this year with completion expected in the second quarter of 2019.

Located onsite at the ranch in Waimea, HI., the microgrid will serve the cattle water pump operations and several other commercial activities near the microgrid. Parker Ranch is also installing solar photovoltaic at the site, with battery energy storage and a back-up diesel generator as part of the microgrid site.

Go Electric’s microgrid control technology will connect and balance the various resources.

“The Go Electric microgrid underpins the three major strategies at Parker Ranch–Energy, Agriculture and Community Development,” said Dutch Kuyper, president and CEO of Parker Ranch. “Through energy resiliency we’ll enable a sustainable future for the ranch, the community, and the big island.”

Go Electric’s microgrid solution provides Parker Ranch with uninterruptible power supply, ensures that renewable energy resources safely operate during a grid outage, and can supply grid services to Hawaii Electric Light Company (HELCO) to enable better grid stability during peak demand or periods with grid frequency or voltage challenges.

 “This microgrid is a unique nexus of energy, agriculture, and water,” said Lisa Laughner, CEO of Go Electric. “We are delighted to be part of Parker Ranch’s resiliency vision while contributing to the broader grid resiliency on the Big Island.”

The Parker Ranch has been a fixture in that part of Hawaii for more than 160 years. It spans more than 250,000 acres and is now run by a charitable trust.

(Rod Walton is content manager for Power Engineering and POWER-GEN International. He can be contacted at 918-831-9177 and rod.walton@clarionevents.com).


Microgrids are the key focus of a conference track at POWER-GEN happening December 4-6. Click here for more conference information and to register.


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