Hawaiian Electric posts earnings, reaches 21% renewables
- Hawaiian Electric Industries (HEI) reported core earnings in the fourth quarter of 2014 of $37.5 million, compared with $39 million in the same quarter last year.
- HEI reported net income of $168.3 million in 2014, up 4% from 2013 levels, and said its core net income was $173.2 million, up 7% from a year before.
- Despite struggles to bring renewables onto its system, HEI said its utilities led the nation in the integration of customer-sited solar and more than 20% of the power consumed by customers was renewable. HEI said it anticipates up to 5% growth in its rate base in the next year.
"We continued to grow our businesses in steady fashion and delivered a competitive core return on equity of 9.8% for the year as HEI's combination of companies continues to provide us with the financial resources to efficiently invest in future opportunities," said Constance Lau, HEI president and CEO.
Lau also said the utility continues to invest in the modernization and improvement of its electric grid as it integrates more renewable energy.
"These investments helped us achieve an energy portfolio powered by 21% renewable sources in 2014, far in excess of Hawaii's 2015 RPS target of 15%," Lau said.
Some 13% of Oahu residential customers now have customer-sited solar, a penetration level that leads the nation. High power prices have led high numbers of residents in Hawaii to consider rooftop solar systems, which has overwhelmed the island's distribution grid.
"Even as recent oil price decreases have brought our customers bill relief, we remain focused on further reducing costs for our customers with proposed grid-scale solar and wind projects," Lau said. "We also are working with other stakeholders to bring liquefied natural gas to Hawaii as a cleaner, lower-cost alternative to oil while we continue to aggressively pursue more renewable generation sources."
HEI said the adjustment from GAAP earnings to core earnings is limited to the costs related to the pending merger between HEI and NextEra Energy. The deal, announced in December, values HECO at $4.3 billion.
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