Friends of Lanai News Release
It’s getting to look a lot like no windmills on Lanai may come true! The latest ranking of renewable energy projects for Hawaii by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism shows the continued absence of Big Wind on Lanai — one more sign that Big Wind may finally be on its way out!
But, unfortunately, any celebration of Big Wind’s demise would be premature since the state Public Utility Commission has not yet made a final ruling on the questions it asked Castle & Cooke: “Show us your ‘progress’ on Big Wind since the sale of your land on Lanai to Ellison in 2012.”
Friends of Lanai has been granted intervenor status in this “progress” docket. We’ve asked the PUC to:
• Disqualify Castle & Cooke’s attorney since a member of the firm is the same individual that gave C&C a waiver from competitive bidding when he worked for the PUC. This is the exemption that “fast-tracked” the project.
• Deny C&C’s request that all its project-related information continue to be hidden from public view so that transparency can, finally, be the guiding process for a meaningful assessment of Big Wind on Lanai’s farewell.
• Understand that C&C’s initial response to the PUC’s inquiry regarding its “progress” be seen for what it really is: nothing but old news, false starts, misinformation, smoke and mirrors.
We remain hopeful that the PUC’s rulings on these three issues may finally bring closure to this ugly, divisive, unnecessary and extraordinarily expensive chapter of corporate greed and political blindness in Hawaii.
But Big Wind did bring one good thing to Lanai: the energizing of community voices. See the sign waving. Remember the trips to the legislature and the confrontation in the governor’s office. Think back to the rally of hundreds when the legislators came to visit, the traveling to testify all over the state and the letters and petitions. Our voices were heard.
We will keep you posted …