Bag of energy savings for a local business
by Dan Kaneko | Jan. 12, 2022
While we use plastic trash liners every day, we rarely stop to think about the operation behind each bag. And after witnessing the manpower and machinery required to manufacture this seemingly simple everyday household good, I don’t think I’ll take my trash liners for granted ever again.
Tucked away in the industrial area of Halawa Valley, Oahu Plastic Bags has been producing plastic bags for many of Hawaii’s local businesses after purchasing the factory from another plastic bag manufacturer in 2017. They mostly manufacture plastic trash bag liners and grocery produce bags, but their most recognizable product is probably the yellow Don Quixote bags you may remember from a few years ago.
Oahu Plastic Bags initially reached out to our Customer Business Management Services team when a ground transformer outside their property began leaking. Fortunately, our CBMS team was quick to get the work assigned, and the transformer was replaced safely.
During their on-site visit, our CBMS team checked to see if there was anything else that they could do to help Oahu Plastic Bags save money on their electric bill.
“We noticed that it was a business that uses quite a bit of electricity — more than just air conditioning and refrigeration. They produce products with equipment that uses a lot of electricity,” said Doug White, customer business management consultant for Hawaiian Electric. “So, we offered to do a load study to monitor the usage over a period of time, and we discovered that there are some opportunities that we could assist with, possibly lowering their electric bill.”
They recommended our Time-of-Use program, which can save customers money if they shift their energy use away from high-demand peak hours to daylight hours when renewable energy production is more abundant.
“After the first few months, Oahu Plastic Bags saw — a two percent savings compared to staying on the previous rate schedule,” Doug said.
Jon Yang, owner and president of Oahu Plastic Bags, appreciated the service he received from our CBMS team. “They ultimately saved me some money on my bill and I’m very happy,” he said.
What really stood out to me throughout the entire interaction was the rapport between our CBMS team and Jon. Even though the CBMS team was only there on a casual visit, they still found a way to provide a service by offering to look into any potential rebate opportunities for Jon to upgrade his office lighting to energy-efficient LED lights. It’s customer interactions like these that allow Hawaiian Electric to make genuine connections with community members across our service territory.
If you’re a business operating in our service territory, contact CBMS to find out how we can help you save money and make better energy choices for your business. Also, please contact Hawaii Energy for rebates and energy-saving tips.
Dan Kaneko is a digital communications and social media specialist at Hawaiian Electric Company.