Moloka’i, Hawaii [RenewableEnergyAccess.com] UPC Wind has pledged $50 million toward Ho’i I Ka Pono, a campaign led by the Moloka’i Community Service Council (MCSC) to purchase lands now owned by Molokai Properties Limited, (Molokai Ranch) for wind farm development.
“Once the community has regained control of the lands owned by Molokai Ranch, we will work directly with community members to lease a portion of the land to build a 21st century wind farm that will generate clean wind energy for Moloka‘i and O‘ahu,” said Paul Gaynor, President and CEO of UPC Wind.UPC Wind has already built the state of Hawaii’s largest wind energy facility, the Maui-based 30-megawatt Kaheawa Wind Power project. The wind farm serves approximately 9 percent of Maui’s annual electricity needs. A significant part of the Kaheawa project was the development of the nation’s first and only Habitat Conservation Plan for a working wind energy project.
In addition to producing clean energy, a wind farm would provide lease revenue to the Moloka‘i community and keep the land rural and accessible for traditional uses such as farming, hunting and cultural practices. Karen M. Holt, Executive Director of the Moloka‘i Community Service Council says that this revenue “will help to ensure that we can manage these lands for generations to come.”