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Living Green With Renewable Energy

(Sponsored) There are many ways to reduce your carbon footprint—and they’re only getting easier. Find out how to live a simpler green life by having all of your renewable energy needs served in one place.


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What is renewable energy?

 

Renewable energy is energy that comes from resources that can be replenished naturally. The Hawai‘i State Energy Office lists six sources that are abundant on our Islands:

 

Bioenergy

This energy comes from organic materials—anything that used to be alive or part of a living thing. This includes everything from leaves and branches to algae and manure. Biomass can be converted into liquid fuels, burned to produce heat, or used to produce electricity.

 

Geothermal

“Geothermal” refers to anything relating to or produced by the earth’s internal heat. In the Aloha State, geothermal energy is typically associated with areas that have volcanic activity.

 

Hydroelectric

Hydroelectric energy comes from water that flows through a turbine, which is attached to a generator.

 

Ocean

Our big blue Pacific is a storehouse of energy—the sun heats the surface of the water and the wind creates waves. The sun and moon create tidal forces, which make tidal fluxes.

 

Solar

This energy from the sun is used as either solar thermal energy or photovoltaic energy.

 

Wind

The force of the wind turning a turbine generates wind energy.

 

How can I use renewable energy in my home?

Start with the basics

 

 

A truly energy-efficient home has solar water heating. Hot water can account for up to 40 percent of your electric bill! Alternate Energy Inc. (AEI) specializes in top-quality solar photovoltaic installations. It features Mitsubishi Electric panels, which are known for quality and durability. “We believe these panels are the best in the industry,” says Mike Ito, AEI’s marketing director.

 

When it comes to cooling your home, AEI’s experts design, install and maintain the latest Mitsubishi systems, which are the gold standard in HVAC. AEI also handles the paperwork so you don’t have to—its staff will take care of the City & County building permit needs of every job, validating the manufacturer warranty and ensuring that the project meets legal specifications. 

 

If you drive an electric vehicle (or plan to), consider an electric vehicle charging station. AEI offers smart ChargePoint stations, which are beautifully designed and work with all EV car models. Each station can accommodate two vehicles at a time and features a self-retracting, maintenance free, ultra-lightweight cord management system. 

 

Did you know? 

In 2015, Hawai‘i enacted the nation’s first 100-percent renewable energy standard. The law mandates that all of the state’s electricity come from renewable sources by 2045.

 

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Honolulu Magazine May 2018
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