LIHUE — The Smart Electric Power Alliance on Wednesday ranked Kauai Island Utility Cooperative among the nation’s top utilities on a key measure of the delivery of solar energy to customers.
KIUC was ranked No. 7 on the list of U.S. electric utilities that added the most new solar power onto their systems on a watts-per-customer basis in 2015.
This annual ranking, based on a survey of 300 utilities nationwide, identifies the companies that are most quickly integrating solar into the nation’s power grid and is part of the ninth annual Utility Solar Market Snapshot issued by SEPA, formerly known as the Solar Electric Power Association. KIUC has been listed among SEPA’s Top 10 categories for solar integration since the rankings began.
With the addition of 802 customer-sited photovoltaic systems as well as its own 12-megawatt solar array in Anahola, KIUC added 591 watts of solar per customer on the grid last year. That’s equal to almost two solar panels for every one of its 33,000 customers.
And with the growth of utility and rooftop solar, KIUC cumulatively has 1,870 watts per customer on its grid or the equivalent of six solar panels per customer.
By the end of 2015, KIUC had 52 megawatts of solar and about 3,200 customer-sited solar systems online.