NRG Systems, Inc. has announced the first commercial sale of its Bat Deterrent System to Kawailoa Wind, Hawaii’s largest wind farm, located on the island of Oahu.
Courtesy of NRG Systems
Kawailoa Wind will outfit each of its 30 turbines with a Bat Deterrent System. The adoption of NRG’s pioneering technology is part of Kawailoa Wind’s ongoing efforts to help conserve the Hawaiian hoary bat, which has been on the United States’ list of endangered species since 1970. Bat fatalities have been documented in association with wind farm operations in Hawaii – an occurrence that has been seen at wind farms across the globe. Because of this, conservation of these animals has become one of the most pressing issues facing the renewable energy industry today.
“DESRI has a history of adopting innovative technologies and ideas to mitigate the impacts of renewable energy development” said Bryan Martin, Chief Executive Officer of D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments (DESRI), which owns and operates Kawailoa Wind. “We are excited to partner with NRG Systems at Kawailoa Wind as part of those efforts.”
Brita Woeck, Environmental Compliance Officer for Kawailoa Wind, added that wind energy is crucial to providing renewable energy in Hawaii and that Kawailoa Wind is invested in finding solutions so that clean energy generation and bat conservation can co-exist in Hawaii and beyond.
Kawailoa Wind is currently curtailing, or turning off turbines in low wind speeds at night, when bats are most active, to minimise Hawaiian hoary bat fatalities. NRG’s Bat Deterrent Systems are expected to be used in addition to curtailment in an effort to achieve even greater reductions in fatalities.
Hawaii is working toward operating on 100 percent of clean energy by 2045. Historically, power plants running off of imported petroleum have provided the majority of Hawaii’s electricity.