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Maui Gas Price Peak Continues, Propane Imports Increase 164%

Posted March 10, 2011, 01:12 PM HST
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By Sonia Isotov

February energy trend data released today by the State’s Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism indicates that Maui regular gas prices rose 6.7% since last year, diesel prices remain the highest in the state, and electricity prices continue to rise.

Foreign crude oil shipments to Hawaii increased 3.3 percent for the year-to-date (January to December) 2010 compared to the same period a year ago.  Statewide imports of propane increased 170.4 percent between 2010 and 2009. And on Maui, propane imports increased 164 percent over the same period a year ago, proving propane usage is increasing.

One bright spot in the energy trend data was the increase of registered passenger hybrid vehicles to Maui between January and February 2011. All the counties added more passenger hybrid vehicles between January and February 2011, with Maui County adding 305 vehicles or 36.3%; Hawaii County adding 443 vehicles or 47.9%; Kauai County adding 36 vehicles or 7.0%, and the City and County of Honolulu leading with an increase of 1,627 vehicles or 33.0%.  Year-over-year numbers not available as the report only started following these numbers last month.

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In February 2011, the national average price for regular gasoline was $3.177 per gallon, which represented a 19.8% increase from the same month a year ago.  Hawaii’s February 2011 price for regular gasoline averaged $3.746, which was about $0.569 or 17.9% higher than the national average for the same month. Among the prices of regular gasoline for Honolulu, Wailuku, and Hilo, as reported by the American Automobile Association, Wailuku had the highest price at $4.015 which was a decrease of $0.02 or 0.5% from the previous month (January 2011).

Between November and December 2010, the average residential retail price for electricity increased on Kauai (up 6.4%), Maui (up 5.6%), Lanai (up 2.6%), and Molokai (up 1.2%), but deceased on Oahu (down 0.2%), and Hawaii (down 1.8%).

More detailed neighbor island and statewide numbers can be found on the DBEDT’s Monthly Energy Trend website.

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