Hawaii Foreign Trade Zone Microgrid Seeks Bids for Renewable Energy

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The Hawaii Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) No. 9 has posted a request for proposals that seeks bids for renewable energy to serve a microgrid.

The FTZ, a state agency that works to increase international trading activity in Hawaii, seeks a contractor to design, construct, install, operate and maintain the renewable energy system.

This seven-acre facility has more than 75 office suites and a federally bonded warehouse. It is working to become as energy independent and efficient as possible.

The grid-connected microgrid will include both renewables and energy storage. It will provide power for the site, as well as sell it to the local utility.

The facility includes electric charging for EV cars. Officials also hope to offer power to cruise ships when they are in port, so that they can avoid running diesel engines.

The state will entertain a long-term power purchase agreement for at least 20 years, including a possible prepaid option.

The electricity rate paid to the contractor cannot exceed what the FTZ now pays the local utility.  The FTZ hopes to reduce operating costs with a stable rate that is independent of price fluctuations caused by changes in oil prices.

As a threshold, bidders must carry a minimum of $1 million insurance, including workers’ compensation. They also must have installed at least one PV project that is larger than 30 KW in the last two years, and entered into at least one PPA for a system of the same size over the same time period.

What is the Hawaii Foreign Trade Zone No. 9?

To determine the project’s net present value, the bid must include the initial price per kWh, the escalation rate, and an estimate of kWh/yr production.

The state will evaluate the bids based on the NPV of the renewable energy system’s savings. It will assume constant electrical demand and a three percent annual increase in electrical rates for the calculations, along with a five percent discount rate.

The RFP uses a point-based scoring system, with an 80 point maximum. Bids that score under 50 points will be rejected.  The scoring system awards 25 points for system comprehensiveness, 25 points for cost, 15 points for the project schedule and 15 points for contractor experience.

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Proposls are due Sept. 9, 2015, 3:30 PM (HST). The agency will evaluate the proposals on or before Oct. 31.

The contact is David Sikkink, (808) 586-2507, BIDS@FTZ9.ORG (insert in the subject line ‘RFP-FTZ2015-001 – RENEWABLE ENERGY GENERATION SYSTEM’).

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About Elisa Wood

Elisa Wood is the chief editor of MicrogridKnowledge.com. She has been writing about energy for more than three decades for top industry publications. Her work also has been picked up by CNN, the New York Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal Online and the Washington Post.