Financing Secured for Hawaiian Wind Farm

With little or no fossil-based energy resources, the Hawaiian Islands have historically been almost entirely dependant on fuel imports to satisfy their energy needs. Now, a new wind farm will help the islands transition into generating some of their own energy from the abundant natural resources on the islands.

Wind farm project developer UPC Wind has secured financing of its 30 MW wind farm project on Maui, Hawaii. The Kaheawa Pastures project will be the first utility-scale wind farm put into service in Hawaii in the recent past. Through a wholly owned affiliate, UPC Wind owns 51 percent of the project while Maui-based Makani Nui Associates owns the remaining 49 percent. “As Maui-based partners we are proud to be sponsoring the development of this important renewable energy project with UPC Wind,” Mike Gresham, president of Makani Nui said. “We are excited about the benefits that this project will bring to our community and to our State. In addition to the direct environmental and economic benefits, there are many indirect benefits to be gained, such as lessening our dependence on imported oil, not just in our State but for our Country as well. We intend for this to be a model project that will demonstrate the benefits of renewable energy for our community.” Last year, the State of Hawaii passed Renewable Portfolio Standard legislation, which supports the development of renewable energy sources. The State of Hawaii relies on imported petroleum for nearly 90 percent of its energy needs. “We are excited to have completed this important milestone,” said Paul Gaynor, President and CEO of UPC Wind. “To date, this project has been an example of a constructive and fast-paced development effort among all of our partner constituents, including Maui Electric Company, Hawaiian Electric Company, State and County Government, the Maui community, and our lenders. We look forward to continuing this approach through construction and commissioning.” Construction and term financing was arranged by HSH Nordbank, New York Branch. Headquartered in Germany, HSH Nordbank is active globally in financing wind projects. The project is expected to be in commercial operation in the first quarter of 2006.

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