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NextEra appears to call it quits on Hawaii inter-island cable project

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NextEra appears to call it quits on Hawaii inter-island cable project

outlinedambitious plans three years ago for an inter-island undersea cable in Hawaii,but the company appears to be abandoning those plans after the state PublicUtilities Commission denied approval of the company's proposed merger withHawaiian Electric IndustriesInc.

NextErasaid by 2013 that it had invested more than $10 million to develop cable routesand conduct preliminary engineering. However, on July 20, NextErasubsidiary NextEra Energy Hawaii LLC filed a motion to withdraw from a PUCproceeding to investigate whether a transmission system between the Oahu andMaui islands may be in the public interest.

Themotion stated that since the PUC had dismissed the merger application, NextEra Energy Hawaiino longer intends to participate in the undersea cable proceeding.

Thecompany also filed to quit a proceeding opened in 2013 to review the progressof Castle & Cooke Resorts LLC's proposed Lanai Wind Project. Again, theNextEra subsidiary said the merger dismissal was the reason for its motion towithdraw from that proceeding.

NextEraEnergy Hawaii also filed to withdraw from a proceeding to review the powersupply improvement plans of HEI subsidiaries Hawaiian Electric Co. Inc., andMaui Electric Co.Ltd., also referred to as the HECO companies.

NextEra'sinterest in the cable and renewables projects had been the of the merger application. In2012, NextEra formed NextEra Energy Hawaii to develop the project.

Thecompany had enthusiastically supported the cable concept, saying in 2013comments that in responding to the "strong and visionary direction ofHawaii's regulatory and political leaders" NextEra envisioned a $600million cable that would link wind resources on Maui with Oahu customers for acumulative present value savings of more than $1.2 billion through 2059 aftersubtracting the cable's costs.