Big Isle utility in biomass deal
HILO - Hawaii Electric Light Co. has agreed to purchase biomass electricity on the Big Island.
The Big Island utility and Hu Honua Bioenergy on Monday announced the signing of a power purchase agreement to provide the island with 21.5 megawatts of renewable energy.
Over the 20-year term of the agreement, Hu Honua would supply electricity at pricing not tied to the price of oil.
The company is converting the former Pepeekeo Sugar Mill into a generation facility using renewable biofuel, including locally grown biomass such as eucalyptus.
Hu Honua estimates supplying about 10 percent of the island's electricity needs.
The agreement requires approval by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission, with input from the state Division of Consumer Advocacy.
Hoku cuts 100 Idaho workers
HONOLULU - Honolulu-based commercial solar power company Hoku Corp. says its subsidiary is laying off about 100 employees at an Idaho manufacturing plant.
Hoku said in a statement Tuesday Hoku Materials needs to lay people off to save cash while it pursues restructuring alternatives.
The Pocatello plant was to have made silicon for solar panels. All contractors stopped construction work at the facility last month.
Hoku says some lienholders have started foreclosure proceedings against the plant in Idaho courts.
In January, the Nasdaq stock market warned that it may delist Hoku because its stock was trading below $1 a share. The company has until July 10 to maintain a minimum bid closing price of at least $1 for 10 straight business days.
On Tuesday, Hoku shares closed down 3 cents at 20 cents.
Surgeon joins Retina Institute
HONOLULU - Dr. George Papastergiou, has joined the team at the Retina Institute of Hawaii as an ophthalmologist and surgeon specializing in the treatment of retinal, macular and vitreous diseases.
He along with two other doctors will be serving patients on Maui on various Fridays.
Surgeries still will be done on Oahu only.
Papastergiou is board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology and an active member of many international retina societies. He also is a prolific researcher and has had his works published, an announcement said.