East Hawaii News

Big Island Electric Bills Decline to Lowest in Nine Years

March 14, 2016, 4:57 PM HST
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Hawai'i Electric Light's Hilo office on Kilauea Avenue. File photo by Dave Smith.

Hawai’i Electric Light’s Hilo office on Kilauea Avenue. File photo by Dave Smith.

Big Island electricity users are seeing the lowest bills in nine years, while customers on Oahu, Molokai, and Lanai are seeing the lowest monthly electric bills in over six years.

On the Big Island, customers are paying a typical bill of $154.26, based on 500 kwh/month. The last time customers saw a lower rate than this was in January 2010, when a typical bill was $152.01 per month.

The current effective rate per kilowatt-hour on the Big Island is 28.5 cents.

“Our customers are continuing to receive the savings from low oil prices,” said Darren Pai, Hawaiian Electric spokesman. “But for the long term, continuing to rely on oil is a bad bet and that’s why we are committed to transitioning to low cost renewable energy to reach our state’s energy goals and ensure sustainable savings for our customers.”

Fuel prices on Maui are seeing the opposite effect with a slightly higher cost in March as the contracted price for wind energy is higher than the cost of using oil to generate electricity.

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On Maui, residents are seeing a typical bill of $139.17, based on 500 kwh/month.

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“The price of oil is historically volatile, so it can go back up just as quickly as it came down. And with the heat of summer and the humidity we experience in the fall months ahead, we encourage customers to continue to focus on good energy saving habits,” Pai said.

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