Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative

Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) is an electric cooperative located on the island of Kauaʻi in Hawaiʻi. With 24,000 member-owners represented by a nine-member board of directors, it is the only electric cooperative in the state of Hawaii,[1] serving the only island in Hawaii not served by an electric utility controlled by Hawaiian Electric Industries.

Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative
IndustryElectric utility
HeadquartersLīhuʻe, Kauaʻi, Hawaiʻi, United States
Key people
Allan A. Smith, Chairman
David Bissell, CEO
Revenue$184,714,288 (2013)
Number of employees

Energy historyEdit

In the 1970s, Kauaʻi burned sugar cane waste to supply most of their electricity.

As of 2008, the majority of the Kauaʻi's electricity was produced by importing liquid petroleum, costing $69.3 million in 2006 and $83 million in 2007.[2] By 2011, 92% of KIUC's power came from diesel.[3]

As of 2017, KIUC's fuel mix was 56% fossil fuels, 9% hydroelectric, 12% biomass and 23% solar. KIUC has successfully integrated large-scale solar into its grid so that, during daylight hours on most sunny days, 97 percent or more of its generation comes from renewable sources. KIUC offers $1,000 rebates to residential customers who have solar water heating systems installed on their homes by Energy Wise Participating Contractors. In March 2017, KIUC opened a 13 MW / 52 MWh battery next to the 12 MW Kapaia solar plant[4] for 13.9¢/kWh.[3] A 2018 project for 28 MW solar with 20 MW / 100 MWh batteries is priced at 11¢/kWh.[5]

Corporate historyEdit

Kauaʻi Electric was incorporated in 1905 as a subsidiary of McBryde Sugar in order to construct a 2.4 MW hydroelectric plant on the Wainiha River. Kauaʻi Electric merged with Lihue Plantation's Waiahi Electric Company early in the 1950s. Kauaʻi Electric became a division of Citizens Utilities Company in 1969. In the late 1990s, Citizens Utilities announced its intentions to divest from the electric utility business and a group of business leaders from Kauaʻi joined to found the Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative in 1999. KIUC purchased Kauaʻi Electric Company on 1 November 2002 for $215 million.[6]

In December 2009, KIUC participated in hearings regarding its plan to minimize the effects its operations have on three endangered Hawaiian birds, the ʻuaʻu, the ʻaʻo, and the band-rumped storm-petrel.[7]


  1. ^ Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative website
  2. ^ Flynn, Meghan. Kauai Island Utility Cooperative. Energy Today Magazine. 30 September 2008
  3. ^ a b Wagman, David (16 March 2017). "Tesla Teams With Tiny Hawaiian Utility to Store Solar". IEEE. Retrieved 29 March 2017. as 2011 we were 92% dependent on fossil fuel generation", primarily diesel and naphtha.
  4. ^ "Tesla launches its Powerpack 2 project in Hawaii, will help Island of Kauai get more out of its solar power". 8 March 2017. Retrieved 8 March 2017.
  5. ^ "AES' New Kauai Solar-Storage 'Peaker' Shows How Fast Battery Costs Are Falling". 16 January 2017. Retrieved 24 January 2017.
  6. ^ Kauai Island Utility Cooperative Agrees to Acquire Kauai Electric from Citizens Communications for $215 Million. Business Wire. 6 March 2002.
  7. ^ State Plans Hearing On Kauai Utility Seabird Plan. KITV. 6 December 2009.

External linksEdit