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Saturday, February 12, 2011
Hawaii Renewable Energy Mandates driving Utility Bills sky high?
By News Release @ 6:28 PM :: 8883 Views :: Hawaii County , Akaka Bill, Energy, Environment

Hawaii's Renewable Energy Mandates, and How It Affects Everyone

From ConforHawaii

The Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative puts Hawaii on a path to supply 40 percent of electricity needs and 70 percent of overall energy needs (including transportation) using "clean" sources by 2030, a far-reaching change for a state now over 90 percent dependent on imported fossil fuels.

This action has been encouraged by both Linda Lingle's Republican administration, and now the new Democratic one.  They all love it.

The 2009 Hawaii State Legislature in Act 155 enacted into law a requirement of 40 % "renewable"  by 2030. Multiple renewable energy projects are in rapid development on every island, and plans include $multi-billion inter-island undersea transmission cables.

But if this is all supposed to feel so good, how come our electricity costs are going up up up and it feels so bad?

Mike Kaleikini, Plant Manager of Puna Geothermal Venture, will speak on Geothermal Energy in Hawaii.

Currently, geothermal supplies 20% of the electricity for the Big Island, and has the capability of supplying all our needs.

Cost approaches that of oil at present.

The "Interim Report" by a state-legislature-appointed Geothermal Working Group recommends that the Big Island switch from oil to geothermal as its primary source of electricity.

HELCO just signed a 20 year agreement to expand geothermal supply about 25%, but they have also signed a 20 year agreement with a 13,000 acre $320 million biofuel operation in Ka'u yet to be built.

Dr. Panos Prevedouros, University of Hawaii Professor of Civil Engineering and former candidate for Mayor of Honolulu, will then speak on The State-wide Implications of the Renewable Energy Mandate and how it makes sense, or doesn't.

HELCO and HECO, as state-regulated PUC monopolies, are virtually guaranteed a profit at any energy cost, and the public is required to pay whatever price is necessary to assure their profitability.

At some price of oil, even the most expensive alternative source can be cost effective.  Are we there, or will we ever be, or is this all a huge misallocation of resources that will needlessly raise our cost of living?

Come and find out!

Sunday, 27 February, 2:00 pm at the Naniloa Hotel Sandalwood Room in Hilo.

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