Categorized | Business, Energy

Hawaii Energy’s bonus solar water heating rebate ends early after exhausting funds


HONOLULU (April 18, 2011) – Only one month after doubling the solar water heating system rebate to stimulate sluggish system sales, Hawaii Energy reports that over 600 households have purchased solar water heating systems, exhausting the federal stimulus money that had been allocated for this enhanced rebate. Fortunately, other solar water heating rebates are still available.

Following the bonus rebate increase from $750 to $1,500, which required special support by the State Energy Office, as well as funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), Hawaii Energy witnessed an unprecedented quadrupling of demand for
solar water heating systems. This was the intended purpose of the bonus rebate, but the popularity of the special bonus depleted the funds much faster than anticipated.

Hawaii residents can still take advantage of the “Hot Water, Cool Rates” (solar interest buy-down) program offered through Participating Lenders, which will continue with the bonus rebate funded through ARRA. Residents who finance their system through this program will receive a bonus instant rebate of $750 in addition to a $1,000 incentive to Participating Lenders to buy-down the interest rate to zero percent or a low rate. A list of Participating Lenders can be found at the Hawaii Energy’s website at…

Typical single family households installing solar water heating systems will save between $587 to $849 per year in electricity costs, and the equivalent to 150 gallons of fossil fuel per year. With electric costs going up, the savings with solar water heating systems will continue to rise with the price of oil. “We would like to thank the entire community for participating in and supporting our ongoing efforts to reduce Hawaii’s dependence on imported oil,” said Ray Starling, Hawaii Energy program manager. “Individual efforts involving energy conservation and efficiency are a vital part of making the state a more sustainable place.”

The bonus offering also kept many of Hawaii Energy’s Participating Solar Contractors busy with installations.

“Thanks to (Hawaii Energy’s) decision to double the rebate, we’ve seen a revival of our business, “said Mike Benes, Hawaiian Island Solar sales manager, shortly after the increase was announced.

Hawaii Energy continues to offer other incentives for energy efficiency measures, including instant rebates for compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) at participating retailers. Additionally, residents may also participate in the Trade-Up for Cool Cash program, which offers a ENERGY STAR® refrigerator from a participating retailer that replaces an older working, but less efficient model.

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