Honolulu, HI goes solar with SunPower®
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The state of solar power in Honolulu, HI
Honolulu ranks first in the U.S. in terms of solar installations per capita and fourth for total solar installations. Hawaii’s climate is ideal for solar adoption, and a comprehensive set of local incentives and regulations make it one of the best places in the U.S. to switch to solar power.
How much solar power does Honolulu, HI produce?
Honolulu produces 646.4 watts of solar power per capita—almost three times as much as its closest competitor, San Diego, coming in at 247.5 watts per capita. The state has 226.5 MW of total solar installations, more than any city in the U.S. except Los Angeles, San Diego, and Phoenix.
Within the next five years, Hawaii is projected to install more solar panels capable of producing an additional 1,275 MW, more than doubling the current solar capacity of 1,225 MW. Some of those solar projects are bound to start in Honolulu, further improving the overall solar adoption in the city.
Is solar power generation feasible in Honolulu, HI?
Geographically, Honolulu is in an extremely favorable area for solar energy production. On average, the island sees more than 5.5 kWh per square meter per day of solar electricity. These numbers are far ahead most of the U.S., with the exception of the Southwest.
The adoption of solar energy in Honolulu—and Hawaii in general—has exploded due to several factors, the most important being the sky-high energy prices. Since the energy needs of the islands are met by transporting fossil fuels for energy production, the energy costs are extremely high.
The average electricity cost in Honolulu is $0.31 for a kilowatt-hour, which is 138 percent above the national average! In addition to the obvious potential monthly savings, the state also offers a comprehensive set of local incentives to make it more appealing.
What legal considerations affect solar power in Honolulu, HI?
Honolulu leads solar adoption in Hawaii. The city has pledged to go 100 percent renewable by 2045, with the majority of that renewable energy coming from the solar installations. In addition to that, the city offers sales and property tax exemptions for those who want to go solar.
Major incentives like the Hawaii Solar Tax Credit provide up to 35 percent of total solar installation cost (up to $5,000 total) play an important role as well, in addition to the federal investment tax credit (ITC).*
Net metering isn’t available in Hawaii. Instead, they have "Customer Grid Supply Plus," also known as CGS+. This system is similar to net metering, but instead of getting a complete credit for the excess energy you produce, you’ll receive a set rate that is lower than that of retail.*
Any energy used from the grid will, however, be billed at the retail rate. There is also a minimum monthly charge for grid use of $25 — so your bill will never be zero. However, even with this reduced version of net metering, solar power still has a very short payback period in Hawaii.
- *. Incentives, rebates, and tax credits vary and are subject to change. SunPower does not warrant, guarantee or otherwise advise its customers about specific tax outcomes or their ability to qualify for local incentives. Consult your tax advisor regarding the solar tax credit and how it applies to your specific circumstances. Your SunPower Dealer can help you determine if you qualify for other local incentives. Please visit the dsireusa.org website for detailed solar policy information.
- *. Utility credits and incentives vary by location and are subject to change. Please visit the dsireusa.org website for detailed solar policy information.
How can I start using solar power in Honolulu, HI?
Switching to solar in Honolulu is a choice you won’t regret—just ask thousands of Honolulu residents who are already enjoying the benefits and savings of a solar system. The cost of energy in Hawaii is very high, and solar power certainly plays an important role in the future of energy in Honolulu.
Whether you are a homeowner, business or homebuilder, SunPower has services and products to suit your needs. Request a free savings estimate to get started and find out how much you can save with SunPower® solar.
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