STATE’S CLEAN ENERGY PROGRESS OUTLINED IN DBEDT REPORT
For Immediate Release: Dec. 27, 2016
HONOLULU – The Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism’s (DBEDT) Hawaii State Energy Office (HSEO) has released its 2016 Energy Resources Coordinator’s Annual Report, which highlights the policies and activities that have advanced the state approximately a quarter of the way toward its target of achieving 100 percent renewable energy by 2045.
The report details the state’s progress toward meeting its goals of energy self-sufficiency, economic growth and carbon reduction. At the heart of this effort is the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative (HCEI), which brings together stakeholders and provides a framework for realizing the goals through various clean energy programs, regulatory advancements, industry partnerships and policies.
The report documents significant progress statewide toward meeting the 100 percent renewable energy goal in the electricity sector. The Kauai Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) experienced the largest jump, with its renewable energy portfolio standard (RPS) increasing from 17.5 percent in 2014 to 27.3 percent in 2015. Hawaii achieved a statewide RPS of 23.4 percent in 2015, up from 21.1 percent in 2014, with notable advances in solar and wind energy. The RPS is currently estimated at about 25 percent, thanks to renewable energy resources added to the grids in 2016.
“Hawaii’s push to create a clean energy future is becoming a reality,” said Luis P. Salaveria, director of the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism. “The state made tremendous strides to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, with about 25 percent of all electricity sales coming from renewable sources. We will continue to work toward our 100 percent renewable energy goal by engaging all stakeholders with collaboration, innovative thinking and a strong entrepreneurial drive.”
There is also good news to report in the effort to reduce petroleum use in the transportation sector. The popularity of electric vehicles (EV) continues to grow, with EV registrations accelerating at a double-digit pace in 2016. By year’s end there were more than 5,000 EVs registered in Hawaii, a 26 percent increase over the same period a year earlier. Hawaii is second in the nation (after California) in per capita EV registrations and a leader in charging facilities.
Hawaii also experienced significant gains in energy efficiency. In addition to progress in the private sector, state and county agencies contributed to the gains by participating in the state’s Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) program, which is coordinated by HSEO. To date, state and local government agencies have signed a total of more than $442.4 million in performance contracts that will save an estimated $1.1 billion over the lifetime of those contracts. These savings are the equivalent to powering 368,426 homes for one year. The projects comprise of more than 96 million square feet in 225 buildings or facilities.
ENERGY STAR certification for public and private buildings throughout Hawaii remained strong in 2016. Honolulu ranked among the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR Top 25 Cities rankings. A total of 69 buildings became certified, which encompassed 9.6 million square feet with an energy savings equivalent to $23 million a year.
The Energy Resources Coordinator’s Annual Report 2016 is available at https://energy.hawaii.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/2016-ERC.pdf
ABOUT HAWAII STATE ENERGY OFFICE
The Hawaii State Energy Office (HSEO) is a division of the state’s Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. With the state’s goal to reach 100 percent renewable energy generation by 2045, HSEO is leading the state’s charge toward clean energy independence. HSEO is committed to developing and deploying high impact solutions that will maximize Hawaii’s renewable energy resources and improve efficiency and transportation standards. Through effective policies and innovative programs, HSEO has positioned Hawaii port as a leader in clean energy innovation, which will generate quality jobs, attract investment opportunities and accelerate economic growth. For more information, visit energy.hawaii.gov
Alan Yonan Jr.
DBEDT State Energy Office