Hawaii is a haven for solar power, with one in nine homes powered by solar installer ProVision, but even more homes will have solar installed soon, reports Eric Wesoff of The Energy Collective. Hawaiian utility Hawaiian Electric (HECO) is in the process of approving more than 3,000 applications for solar installations, with most of them expected to be approved by late April. The backlog is largely due to the utility company learning how to deal with the large concentration of solar in one place:
On Oahu, solar penetration has increased to beyond daytime minimum load on many distribution grid circuits, meaning that there’s more solar power being generated than electricity consumed by customers on that section of the grid. That’s the problem that led HECO to slow down new permits last year -- and prompted the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission to respond with a broad set of orders, demanding that the state’s primary utility make fundamental changes to how it manages distributed energy.
As solar power continues to gain traction and becomes more viable, utilities will have to learn how to deal with the shifting needs of customers. Learn more about how this shift is going to impact utilities and consumers in The Energy Collective's full coverage.