Archive for the ‘Hawaii Energy’ Category

Hawaii: The Next 50

October 15th, 2015

Visual arts winner from last year's Next 50 contest by Bryson Manuel of Waipahu INtermediate School in the grades 6-8 visual arts category. Courtesy image.

Bryson Manuel of Waipahu Intermediate School was last year's winner in the grades 6-8 visual arts category.
Courtesy Hawaii: Next 50.

What will Hawaii's energy future look like in 50 years? Will we have reached our goal of reaching 100 percent renewable energy by 2045? Are we on the right track?

Lawmakers are calling on students in grades 4 through 12 to share their ideas on how to make Hawaii a renewable energy leader in the second annual Hawaii: Next 50 Contest. Students are invited to create an essay, poster or video in response to the question: Over the next 50 years, what can I do to help Hawaii reach its 100 percent renewable energy goal?

The contest, inspired by former Gov. George Ariyoshi's book, "Hawaii: The Past Fifty Years, The Next Fifty Years," prompts the next generation to think about what social, cultural, and economic roads we can take to keep Hawaii moving forward into the next century. Students are asked to read Ariyoshi's book (free copies available upon request) and then respond to the question in either essay form or visual arts form.

The deadline for all entries is 11:59 p.m. on Jan. 31, 2016. Winners will be announced in March 2016.

Last year, students were asked: What needs to happen in the next 50 years for Hawaii to be the best place to work and live? They responded with artwork, like the one by Kaydee Rapozo below, depicting renewable energies. One student, Dallas Kuba from Manoa Elementary School, wrote an essay about homelessness.

Kaydee Rapozo was last year's winner for the Grades 9-11 category. Courtesy image.

Kaydee Rapozo was last year's winner for the Grades 9-11 category. Courtesy image.

There were more than 450 entries from keiki across the state, according to Rep. Mark Nakashima, who spearheaded the revival of the contest.

"We were amazed to see the innovative range of their ideas," he said. "This year we wanted to take that same enthusiasm and focus it on one of our state's most pressing issues: the necessity of renewable energy to end our dependency on oil."

Ariyoshi said: "It's imperative that young people know they don't have to wait to graduate or become an adult to join the conversation in shaping our state. The book was my vision of a progressive Hawaii and it's exciting to see what concepts the up-and-coming generation develops if we just ask."

Judging criteria include whether the entry clearly provides an answer to the question, creativity and articulation.

Winners will be honored during a floor presentation at the Hawaii State Capitol and be invited to attend a luncheon with legislators. They will also receive a monetary prize and be published online.

Teyshaun Rosales, last year's winner, grades 4-5 visual arts category. Courtesy image.

Teyshaun Rosales, last year's winner, grades 4-5 visual arts category. Courtesy image.


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Window A/C rebates

September 25th, 2014



Summer's officially over, but if you're still trying to cool your heels in the isles, Hawaii Energy is offering $50 rebates for anyone who trades up to an EnergyStar-rated window air conditioner.

Hawaii Energy, a ratepayer-funded energy conservation and efficiency program, is offering a $50 rebate for individuals who swap out an old working unit for a more energy efficient one. They're available on a first-come, first-served basis, but the perk is free pick-up and haul-away of the old A/C unit.

The rebates are available on Oahu, Maui and the Big Island, but not Lanai or Molokai (sorry, folks).

To qualify, your unit must be EnergyStar rated and have an energy efficiency ratio of 10.8 or higher.

It's easy.

1. Pick up an application at the time of purchase of an EnergyStar A/C unit from participating retailers, including Lowe's, Sears, NEX, Home Depot and City Mill.

2. Schedule a pick-up of your old A/C unit for recycling by calling 537-5577 or (877) 231-8222.

3. Send your completed rebate application and original receipt via snail mail to Hawaii Energy, P.O. Box 3920, Honolulu, HI 96812. The rebate should arrive in the mail in eight to 10 weeks.

The switch could save you about $80 per year on your electric bill (though savings vary depending on the make, model and usage of your window A/C unit).

If you're getting a split-air A/C system, there are $150 rebates available for variable refrigerant flow air conditioners up to 24,000 BTU, and $250 rebates for units from 24,001 to 36,000 BTU. They must have a minimum SEER rating of 16.

Questions? See if the answer is in the FAQ list.


Posted in Energy, Green home, Hawaii Energy | Comments Off on Window A/C rebates

WEfficiency: Crowdfunding to help non-profits

May 30th, 2014

Crowdfunding is such the thing to do these days.

Now, with the Blue Planet Foundation's launch of WEfficiency, you can donate or loan money to a non-profit group, specifically with the intention of helping it become more energy-efficient.

It's a win-win because a $1 donation can turn into $4 in energy savings. A $10,000 lighting retrofit, for example, can save the non-profit up to $40,000 over its lifetime. The non-profit's investment in energy efficiency measures results in immediate energy savings.

You can opt to give the non-profit a loan (called a "loanation") and get your money back, or you can give an outright donation.


The first three non-profits that are giving WEfficiency a shot are YWCA Laniakea, Damien Memorial School and Hawaii Public Radio.

To boost the kick-off of WEfficiency, Hawaii Energy, a ratepayer-funded energy conservation program , is offering matching "loanations."

Gov. Neil Abercrombie joined Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and the Blue Planet foundation board of directors in presenting the first "loanations" to representatives from the three non-profit groups last Thursday (May 22) to kick off the program.

In 2013, WEfficiecy, which was developed by Honolulu-based solutions agency Sudokrew, was formally recognized as a Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action.

To make a "loanation," visit


Posted in Blue Planet Foundation, Energy, Green non-profits, Hawaii Energy | Comments Off on WEfficiency: Crowdfunding to help non-profits

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