by Hawaii Powered | July 5, 2022
While most drove by in vehicles, one arrived on a lawnmower from an afterschool job next door and another skateboarded by with a friendly shaka and smile as they picked up a free kit of energy-saving items on Molokai in May.
These were just some of the several hundred Molokai residents who came to drive-through events hosted by Hawaiian Electric, in partnership with Hawaii Energy and the County of Maui Department of Water Supply.
With the ongoing war in Ukraine impacting fuel prices and availability globally and locally, the distributed kits contained energy-saving light bulbs, water-saving faucet aerators and other items to help Molokai residents reduce energy use and manage their utility bills.
“As one of the most remote communities we serve across five islands, Molokai is experiencing, first-hand the global energy market instability at the gas pump and in their utility bills,” said Mahina Martin, director of community affairs for Hawaiian Electric in Maui County. “With this in mind, we wanted to make it easy for our Molokai customers to pick up the kits in their own neighborhoods, close to their homes so we purposefully planned for three different distribution sites spanning the island — Kilohana in the east end, Maunaloa in the west, and central Kaunakakai.”
Saving energy doesn’t always mean purchasing special items. By doing an inventory of how energy is being used at home and taking small steps to reduce energy, you can help make a difference. Some actions to try:
- Stay cool. Open windows to let trade winds cool your home or use fans instead of air conditioning. If using AC, set thermostats to 78 degrees.
- Check appliances. Make sure your refrigerator and freezer aren’t at their maximum settings. Dust off coils or filters and check rubber seals.
- Fix leaks. A leaking hot water faucet wastes both water and energy.
- Cold wash. Use a cold water wash and rinse for your clothes whenever possible. Water heating accounts for 90% of the energy used by your washing machine.
- Dry wisely. Take advantage of fresh air and sunshine by hanging clothes outside instead of using a clothes dryer. If using a clothes dryer, clean the lint filter before each load to maintain the unit’s efficiency.
Offers on energy-saving rebates and other helpful tips are also available on our website and Hawaii Energy. For customers having trouble paying your electricity bill, go to hawaiianelectric.com/paymentarrangement to review payment plan options. For information on available financial assistance, go to hawaiianelectric.com/COVID19.
The kits on Molokai were provided on a first come, first served basis and offered while supplies lasted. Additional energy-saving kit distributions are also being planned for Maui and Lanai.
“We’re here to help during these uncertain times because it’s difficult to predict when oil prices will stabilize given the current international situation,” Martin said. “We know how our communities rely on the energy we provide and we’ll continue to reach out to them across our islands.”
Learn more about Hawaii Powered and our clean energy future at www.hawaiipowered.com.