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Policy 2008

 

Act Description Purpose Significance
 Act 31 Makes solar energy facilities a permitted use in the agricultural district on class D or E land. Included solar energy facilities as a permitted use within additional agricultural districts. Allowing the mix use of land assets provides a greater opportunity for Hawaii to become self sufficient.
 Act 90 Amends the definition of “renewable energy producer” to include growers and producers of plant or animal materials used primarily for the production of biofuels or other fuels, so that they will be eligible for direct leases of public land. Amended the definition of “renewable energy producer” within the Hawaii Revised Statutes, to include growers and producers of plant or animal materials used primarily for the production of biofuels or other fuels, so that they will be eligible for direct leases of public land. Clarified language to ensure broader availability of direct leases of public land.
 Act 118 Clarifies provisions of chapter 269, part VII, Hawaii Revised Statutes, relating to the administration and use of moneys supporting energy-efficiency and demand-side management programs and services and the status of the public benefits fee administrator. Established Public Benefits Fee allowing for a funding mechanism to support energy efficiency and demand-side management programs and services. Established a fee and a funding mechanism separate from the utilities and under regulation to the Public Utilities Commmission.  It was important to codify that the funds cannot be used for general fund applications.
 Act 145 Permits the use of lands in agricultural land use districts to be used for agricultural-energy facilities provided that the primary activity of the agricultural-energy enterprise is agricultural activity. Permits the use of lands in agricultural land use districts for agricultural-energy facilities when the production, storage, and distribution of renewable energy are integrated with an agricultural activity. Allowing the mix use of land assets provides a greater opportunity for Hawaii to become self sufficient.
 Act 150 Requires the public utilities commission to ensure that a percentage of the total rated generating capacity produced by eligible customer-generators be reserved for electricity produced by eligible residential or small commercial customer-generators. Allows public utilities commission to define the maximum capacity for eligible residential or small commercial customer-generators and to evaluate, on an island-by-island basis, the applicability of the generating capacity requirements and, in its discretion, exempt an island or a utility grid system from the generating capacity requirements. Enhanced Hawaii’s net energy metering statute by providing that every electric utility shall reserve a portion of the utility’s net energy metering component for electricity generated by eligible residential and small commercial customer-generators. Amended net-metering program to encourage and drive customer generated renewable energy.
 Act 151 Authorizes the public utilities commission to establish a ratepayer-funded photovoltaic rebate program. Authorized the public utilities commission to establish a ratepayer-funded photovoltaic rebate program to promote the use of this renewable energy technology to utility customers within electric utility service areas. Hawaii’s self sufficiency it critial to its economy.  In order to offset high up front costs, a rebate was established.  This rebate was funded through a fee collected from rate payers.
 Act 204 Directs the public utilities commission to establish standards for solar water heater systems. Prohibits issuance of a building permit on or after 1/1/2010 for single-family residences that do not include a solar water heater system that meets the standards. Allows the energy resources coordinator to approve a variance for installation of solar water heater systems. Restricts the solar thermal energy systems tax credit available for single-family residential properties to those properties for which permits were issued prior to 1/1/2010. Provides that renewable energy technologies tax credits for systems installed and placed in service in 2009 for single-family residential properties may not be claimed by residential home developers. (CD1) The legislature finds that Hawaii’s economic viability is dependent on the availability of affordable energy pricing.  The State must seriously consider requiring the installation of solar water heater systems in all new single-family dwellings constructed after December 31, 2009, to accelerate the installation of this type of energy saving device to benefit the owners and renters of newly constructed homes. A government mandate of solar water heating systems in new home construction effectively shifts from government investment in this technology via tax credits to a required investment by the private sector that will result in greater benefit to the public at large through the prudent investment in this type of renewable energy saving device.
 Act 207 Establishes a renewable energy facility siting process to expedite the review and action upon state and county permits necessary for the siting, development, construction, and operation of a renewable energy facility of at least 200 megawatts of electricity. Establishes a renewable energy facility siting special fund. Established a renewable energy facility siting process for state and county permits required for the siting, development, construction, and operation of a new renewable energy facility of at least two hundred megawatts of electricity. Coordinating the process for required permits is in the State’s interests to reduce Hawaii’s over-dependence on fossil fuels and meet Hawaii’s energy self-sufficiency goals and mandates and will encourage the timely development of renewable energy projects that utilize Hawaii’s indigenous renewable energy resources for the health, safety, and welfare of the residents of Hawaii.
 Act 208 Establishes a full-time, temporary renewable energy facilitator position within the department of business, economic development, and tourism and provides funding from the energy security special fund. Establishes the energy security special fund. Amends uses of the environmental response revolving fund to include deposits to the energy security special fund. Appropriates moneys to the energy security special fund for funding new personnel costs and designated energy program activities. The process for obtaining the necessary permits for renewable energy projects and developments and the process for meeting state, county, and federal regulations has for decades been overly time-consuming, cumbersome, onerous, and costly.  The inefficiency of the permitting and development process acts as a barrier to meeting Hawaii’s renewable energy goals. Streamlining the permitting process for large scale renewable energy projects enables a a more efficient transition to clean energy in the electricity sector.