Monday, February 18, 2008

Hawaii Startup Maui Energy Acquired

An alternative energy startup in Hawaii that specializes in residential wind energy has been purchased. Here's the story from the Honolulu Star Bulletin.

Maui Energy announced recently that it has agreed to be acquired by Colorado based Vista International Inc. Vista, which specializes in converting waste to energy, sees Maui Energy as a way to gain traction in the local renewable energy market. Maui Energy Company is the authorized Southwest Wind Power Distributor in Hawaii and seems to be positioned well in a state where residential wind energy has huge potential.

There are 3 reasons why residential wind should work in Hawaii: the cost of energy is high, the wind speeds are high and the local government is very supportive of green initiatives. Hawaii offers an income tax credit allowing individuals and corporations a credit of 20 percent of the cost of equipment and assembly of a residential or non-residential wind energy system to be applied in the year the system was purchased and placed in operation. Southwest claims that it's Skystream 3.7 residential wind turbine can pay for itself in less that 4 years in this environment.

The only stumbling block for small wind in Hawaii may be in the permits required, but this is something that Caires has been working on. He expects that the permits will go through and the installations of the residential wind turbines will begin on Maui sometime in the next few months. Expansion to neighbor islands will follow.

"The small-scale wind turbine systems going to accelerate in the market here in Hawaii," he said. "The market has not been penetrated."

Related links:
Hawaii Wind Maps
Small Wind in Hawaii

Interested in residential wind power? Considered building your own turbine?
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