For Immediate Release: December 10, 2010

HONOLULU–Hotels and other hospitality industry facilities can now become official ENERGY STAR-labeled buildings with the help of a new program offered by the Energy Office of the State Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (DBEDT). Buildings achieving an ENERGY STAR label are in the top 25 percent nationwide in energy efficiency performance. DBEDT has contracted with The Chong Group, LLC, to provide building owners and facility managers with technical assistance in applying for the ENERGY STAR Building label that has become a selling point for visitors interested in staying in “green”-certified facilities.

“ENERGY STAR building owners have found that by implementing water- and energy-saving improvements, utility costs can be reduced by 10 to 30 percent without sacrificing service, quality, style, or comfort,” said Ted Peck, administrator for the State Energy Office. “We want to help Hawaii’s visitor industry become ENERGY STAR certified. Aside from saving energy and money, this will give us a competitive edge especially with the growing number of eco-conscious travelers.” Hotels in Hawaii have received inquiries from travel advisors who are responding to clients interested in staying at ENERGY STAR-labeled properties.

Property owners and managers interested in applying for the ENERGY STAR Building label can contact The Chong Group by email [email protected], or telephone (808) 791-9855 by the initial deadline of December 31, 2010.

The Chong Group will provide third-party verification required for each application, and submit the verification to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which administers the ENERGY STAR program. For facilities that qualify for the verification phase of the program, a $500 fee is required, with State funding covering the bulk of the cost for benchmarking, verification, and application to EPA.

Applicants most likely to qualify for eligibility for ENERGY STAR include the following characteristics:
1. Facility recently earned the ENERGY STAR award/certification.
2. Air conditioning system has been upgraded in the past seven years.
3. Lighting system has been upgraded in the past seven years.
4. Water heating system has been upgraded in the past five years.
5. Guestrooms have been renovated in the past five years.
6. Lobby has been renovated in the past five years.
7. All energy sources (electricity, gas, diesel, etc.) to the facility are metered.

The ENERGY STAR Building program supports the State’s Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, which sets a 70 percent clean energy goal by the year 2030: 30 percent from energy efficiency and 40 percent from renewable energy. Energy efficiency is one of the most cost-effective approaches for a hotel to reduce its energy costs as well as its carbon footprint. Buildings eligible for ENERGY STAR label include hotels, bank branches, supermarkets, residence halls, dormitories, retail buildings, data centers, hospitals, houses of worship, K-12 schools, medical office buildings, office buildings, and warehouse buildings.

For more information on the ENERGY STAR Building program, visit the website at


For more information, contact:

Richard Lim
Interim Director, DBEDT
Phone: (808) 586-2355

Ted Peck
State Energy Administrator
Phone: (808) 587-3812


For Immediate Release: December 8, 2010

HONOLULU–The State Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) Energy Office has filed state and federal notices of intent to prepare a programmatic environmental impact statement (PEIS) for the Hawaii Interisland Renewable Energy Program (HIREP). The PEIS will examine the program-level impacts of the development of up to 400 megawatts (MW) of wind energy on Maui County, the transmission of the energy to Oahu via an undersea cable, and the integration of that energy into Oahu’s electrical grid.

The PEIS will incorporate a thorough analysis of overall impacts and benefits, but will not grant any development rights or privileges to a specific wind farm project. Instead, it will provide a framework, uniform policies, and a process for comprehensively deciding how project components should be integrated within the framework. A PEIS is often employed on the federal level. It will specify best management practices for the three major HIREP components:

• Transmission of renewable energy via undersea cable to Oahu: The undersea interisland cable will allow the sharing of renewable energy generated in Maui County, particularly Lanai and Molokai where resources such as wind are substantial, with Oahu, where resources are limited and demand for energy is high.
• Generation of up to 400 MW of wind power on Lanai and Molokai: This PEIS will focus on wind, but the HIREP program could be expanded in the future to include other types of renewable technologies.
• Utility infrastructure upgrades on Oahu needed to integrate large amounts of wind energy into the electrical grids.

“We are examining large infrastructure investments with considerable impacts on our communities. The PEIS and the subsequent project-specific EIS will increase the opportunities for public input,” said Ted Peck, administrator of the State Energy Office. “We have to seriously study the best way we can use the renewable resources we have so that we can significantly reduce our use of imported oil.

“Our Neighbor Islands have the richest renewable energy resources. With an interisland cable, we can share these homegrown resources to reach the State’s goal of 70 percent clean energy by 2030.”

In 2008, the State Legislature passed a law to create the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative (HCEI) with the goal of 70 percent clean energy by 2030. This can be achieved with a 30 percent increase in energy efficiency and 40 percent new renewable energy development. Wind energy to be studied in this PEIS has the potential of contributing 14 percent to the HCEI goals.

The public has a three-month opportunity to provide input through the beginning of March. For more information on how to comment, log on to

The PEIS is funded by the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and has a scheduled completion date of April 2012. It will be conducted by AECOM Technical Services, Inc. (AECOM). AECOM is a global provider of professional technical and management support services to a broad range of markets, including transportation, facilities, environmental, energy, water and government with approximately 52,000 employees around the world and approximately 200 professionals living and working in Hawaii.


For more information, contact:

Richard Lim
Interim Director, DBEDT
Phone: (808) 586-2355

Ted Peck
State Energy Administrator
Phone: (808) 587-3812


For Immediate Release: December 2, 2010

HONOLULU – The State of Hawaii’s Department of Accounting and General Services (DAGS) will install over 1,000 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels on the Kalanimoku Building in the downtown Honolulu Capital District as part of the State’s ongoing efforts to lead by example in reducing Hawaii’s dependence on imported oil.

The 236 kilowatts-DC PV system, when complete in February 2011, will generate 296,849 kilowatt-hours of clean energy each year and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about 500,000 pounds (carbon dioxide equivalents) annually.

“The investments in energy efficiency improvements at State buildings will save taxpayer money in the long-run by reducing electricity costs, while helping to move Hawaii toward a clean energy future,” said Governor Linda Lingle.

This project is made possible by $2.9 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant provided by the U.S. Department of Energy.

“This project will serve as a very visible demonstration of the State’s commitment to clean energy and will provide valuable educational opportunities to the occupants of government offices, the public and decision makers,” said Ted Liu, director of the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism.

The installation of the solar panels will be undertaken by NORESCO, LLC, and will add to the $33.9 million Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) project they were awarded in October 2009 to improve the energy efficiency of State office buildings within the State Capital District.

“The PV project is one component of DAGS’ overall strategy to reduce energy usage in ten of our large government office buildings through an energy savings performance contract,” said State Comptroller Russ Saito.

In addition to the energy savings generated from the Kalanimoku photovoltaic project, Saito said that the larger ESPC project will reduce total energy consumption in the 10 buildings by about 30 percent, or save about 6.3 million kilowatt-hours of energy per year. The ten buildings include the State Capitol, Kalanimoku, Keelikolani, Kekauluohi, Kekaunaoa, Keoni Ana, Kinau Hale, Liliuokalani, No. 1 Capitol District, and Leioopapa-a-Kamehameha. Energy conservation measures in this project include improvements to air conditioning systems, lighting systems, water conservation, education of building occupants on conservation and sustainable practices, building envelope modifications, and desktop computer power management. Construction is about halfway through and is expected to be completed in late 2011.

These projects are examples of the State’s commitment to the Governor’s Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative and directly support achieving the goal of 70 percent clean energy (40 percent through renewable and 30 percent through efficiency measures) by 2030.

Success for the Kalanimoku PV project can be credited to the collaborative efforts of Patricia Saito, project officer for the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE), Russ Saito, comptroller of DAGS, and Ted Liu, director of DBEDT.


For more information, contact:

Russ Saito
State Comptroller, DAGS
Phone: (808) 586-0400

Lenny Klompus
Senior Advisor – Communications
Phone: (808) 586-7708

Ted Liu
Director, DBEDT
Phone: (808) 586-0255

Russell Pang
Chief of Media Relations
Phone: (808) 586-0043