Kalama Terrace Doing Its Part to Combat Climate Change

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Kalama Terrace takes a giant leap forward towards becoming Maui’s first carbon neutral condominium complex.

Kalama Terrace condo complex in Kihei generates almost 100% of its electricty from its solar array.

Kalama Terrace in Kihei, Maui is an eco-conscious condominium complex

I’m happy to say we’re doing our part to drastically reduce our carbon footprint and showing others it also makes perfect financial sense to do so.

After two years of planning, Kalama Terrace, a forward-thinking condominium and vacation rental complex in Kihei, Maui, has flipped the switch on a newly installed 147 Kilowatt solar array. The solar array, consisting of 578 solar panels, is expected to produce 263 megawatts of clean energy every year - enough to offset almost 100% of the complex’s power consumption needs.

“I’m happy to say we’re doing our part to drastically reduce our carbon footprint and showing others it also makes perfect financial sense to do so," says Ryan Logtenberg, Lead organizer for Kalama Terrace’s solar power project.

The island of Maui generates approximately 80% of its electricity from diesel powered generators and so the 147kw solar array at Kalama Terrace is expected to help reduce the island’s carbon emissions in a big way, with greenhouse gas reductions of up to 71 tons per year, totalling more than 1,278 tons for the next 20 years.

From a financial perspective, Kalama Terrace Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) deal with Haleakala Solar consists of the PPA investor paying all the upfront costs of the project (hardware and installation) and charge Kalama Terrace a 25% discount on MECO’s electricity rate immediately. Not only will Kalama Terrace save approximately $24,000 per year on its energy bill, but it will be able to buy out the solar array completely in seven years when the savings will then be approximately $96,000/year on electricity.

This isn’t the first step Kalama Terrace has taken to reduce its carbon footprint. The property has made strides in a few other areas:

  • Kalama Terrace has been operating a 24 panel solar hot water system since 2005. The solar hot water system saves the complex approximately $41,000/year in water heating costs and offsets approximately 80 tons of carbon emissions each year.
  • The complex offers an efficient light exchange program that offers free fluorescent lightbulbs in exchange for inefficient incandescent ones. Conversion to LED lighting through out the common areas has also been accomplished.
  • The property also has a non-smoking bylaw that it feels will encourage owners to use the smoke-free Hawaiian trade winds to cool their unit instead of air conditioning.

With these eco-conscious programs in place, Kalama Terrace is proud to be a model for other condominium complexes in Hawaii and elsewhere.

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Ryan Logtenberg