Letters | 3-17-14


In defense of HELCO and alternative energy stance

Hawaii Electric Light Co. gets a lot of heat for dragging out the permitting process for alternative energy systems that are tied into their grid. They are not fibbing when they say that gusts of wind or calm spells, or a cloud shadow drifting over the thousands of solar photovoltaic arrays around town can produce sudden unpredictable surges or sags in energy supplied to the grid.

Throttling a large power station up or down is not something that can be done fast enough to respond to these peaks and valleys in supply from photovoltaic planels and wind farms.

What’s needed is a shock absorber, just like you have on a car. Without a good shock absorber the steering can get very iffy and even uncontrollable.

An example of an electric grid shock absorber is a very large battery that can absorb surges, and quickly fill in for drops in supply from these variable alternative electrical suppliers. Or a lot of smaller batteries spread around town, like maybe thousands of electric car battery packs or home battery banks all plugged into a smart grid.

Smart grid is a term you are going a lot about in the near future, a grid that will let everybody put solar photovoltaics on their roofs, with a shock absorber in the garage or in the backyard.

Richard Swann

Captain Cook

Why can’t crimes be solved quickly?

I’ve had enough already. Does our police department do anything besides road blocks and speed traps.

How many missing people are still out there? How many murders are unsolved? We all know there’s plenty of both. The guy that killed his girlfriend was hanging within less than a couple hundred yards from their camp site. Nobody could figure out where the two were living? Really?

My truck was stolen right out of my driveway. It was completely locked up and we were home. Didn’t hear a thing. One of over a dozen vehicles stolen in the Waikoloa and Puako area in a year. This is an island. What is going on?

Steve Hudson

Waikoloa