3 ways Hawaii is becoming more energy efficient

3 ways Hawaii is becoming more energy efficient

Honolulu's McKinley High School is one of many buildings that are becoming more energy efficient. Photo courtesy of U.S. Department of Energy

Hawaii is known for its pristine beaches, active volcanoes and world-class surfing. It is also known for its extraordinary commitment to clean energy.

Roughly 26 percent of the state’s electricity generation comes from renewable sources, and Hawaii is aiming to make that 100 percent by 2045, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

Lesser-known is Hawaii’s significant progress on energy efficiency. By 2030, the Aloha State wants to decrease its electricity consumption statewide by 30 percent.

Here are three ways the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is supporting that effort:

Benchmarking Public Facilities

Hawaii completed a successful public benchmarking project with the support of DOE’s State Energy Program. Between 2014 and 2016, the state benchmarked 416 public facilities, including more than 2,600 buildings (some facilities like universities encompass multiple buildings) covering more than 29 million square feet.

The benchmarking project found potential for all state agencies to save more than 56 million kilowatt hours annually — the equivalent to saving more than $25 million using current electricity rates.

Learn more about building energy use benchmarking.

Energy Savings Performance Contracts

Last year, Hawaii awarded the single largest energy savings performance contract (ESPC) in the United States to date, a $158 million contract to retrofit 12 of the state’s airports. The renovation is expected to result in 49 percent annual energy savings. The state’s airports division recently added a second phase to that project in March, bringing total guaranteed energy savings at Hawaii’s airports to more than $606 million over a 15-year period.

In addition, Hawaii partnered in DOE’s Better Buildings ESPC Accelerator. The Accelerator catalyzed public-sector energy efficiency investments of more than $2 billion and left a legacy of valuable tools and resources behind.

Recognizing Green Businesses

With the support of the State Energy Program, Hawaii recognizes a host of businesses for their sustainable energy practices through its Green Business Program. From 2009 to 2016, the program assisted and recognized more than 100 businesses and government entities that generated savings of more than 18 million kilowatt hours, 136 million gallons of water, and $5 million in electricity costs.

At businesses’ request, the Hawaii state energy office provides technical assistance to help achieve savings targets.

Learn more about Hawaii’s bold energy agenda


Topics: Architectural Firms, Associations / Organizations, Automation and Controls, Building Owners and Managers, Construction Firms, Consulting - Green & Sustainable Strategies and Solutions, Data Centers - Mission Critical Information Centers, Energy Saving Products, Engineering Firms, Great Commercial Buildings, Multifamily / Multiunit Residential, Office Buildings, Sustainable Communities, Technology, Urban Planning and Design

Companies: U.S. Department of Energy

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