Energy IQ: Hawaii's largest craft brewer pursues grid independence
What if you could drink your favorite craft beer while also helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions? If you are a fan of the Maui Brewing Company, that’s kind of what you’ve been doing.
Maui Brewing Co. was established in 2005 with the goal of brewing authentic, local Hawaiian craft beer. Or as the company's website describes their product, they make beers "crafted with passion from the heart of paradise."
Less than 15 years later, Maui Brewing Co. is now the largest craft brewer in the state, producing more than 53,000 barrels of beer annually.
Beyond brewing seven of their beers throughout the year and releasing "a ton of" limited release beers, the brewery holds a national recognition that truly sets it apart from the crowded craft brewery field: It is one of the few breweries of its size in the United States that is on track to be off-grid by the end of 2019.
'Hop-hop hooray!' to craft beer and sustainable manufacturing processes
Maui Brewing Co. started their journey towards grid independence a couple of years ago with two objectives.
"We wanted to lead by example and show that you can be a manufacturer and operate in a sustainable manner," said Garrett Marrero, CEO and Founder of Maui Brewing Co. "Moreover, the ability to estimate the cost of electricity is a competitive edge for our brewery. We are not subject to ups and downs in fuel pricing anymore with the system we have built."
According to Daithi Magee, General Manager of King Power Systems, a Cummins-authorized dealer in Hawaii, Marrero and the team at Maui Brewing Co. have selected the right mix of technologies in their quest to be a fully sustainable operation.
"Maui Brewing Co. has intelligently mixed a set of technologies in their journey towards going off-grid. At the center of these technologies is a hybrid system featuring solar photovoltaic cells, stationary batteries and Cummins generators," said Magee. "An array of solar cells has the production capacity of 1,200 kilowatts to charge the stationary batteries throughout Hawaii’s 3,000+ hours of sunshine per year. When there is need for more power, Cummins generators charge the batteries and power the facilities. The Cummins generators were chosen because of the PowerCommand 3300 control, robust Cummins QSL9 engine, Tier 4 emissions rating, and of course the unparalleled dealer support we offer."
In the end, the brewery - through the help of this setup - minimizes its carbon footprint, develops the ability to estimate its cost of electricity and protects its operations from grid related power outages.
"As we listen to craft beer drinkers' desires and bring them the best beer possible, we will continue to contribute to the local economy and lead the way in sustainability-minded manufacturing processes," added Garrett.
Visit Maui Brewing Co. to learn more about their journey towards grid independence.
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