By Maui Now Staff
The Hawaiʻi Public Utilities Commission has approved of a request to extend discount rates for another year to customers charging electrical vehicles during off-peak hours.
“Electric vehicles are increasing here and nationwide, making a growing contribution to our clean energy future,” said Jim Alberts, of Hawaiian Electric, the company that filed the request with the PUC.
Alberts, who serves as senior vice president for customer service said, “Offering these special, discount charging rates encourages our customers to consider buying an EV. We also gain experience with how customers charge their vehicles to maximize the benefits that EVs can bring.”
The pilot program for reduced rates began in October 2010, and includes optional lower rates between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m.
According to Hawaiian Electric Companies, off-peak rates on the neighbor islands are about 7 to 9 cents per kWh lower than standard rates. The company reports that off-peak rates on Oʻahu are about 6 cents per kWh lower than standard rates.
Charging at other times is available, but officials say it is about 3 cents to 5 cents per kWh above standard rates.
Hawaiian Electric Companies also offers other pilot programs designed to promote clean energy use and support the EV industry in Hawaiʻi.
EV customers with rooftop solar photovoltaic systems, can combine the discount EV charging rates with net energy metering for the greatest economic benefit, according to company officials.
There is also a pilot rate program designed to “ease EV user’s range anxiety,” and a commercial facility service rate that makes it “financially attractive for businesses to install public EV fast chargers metered separately from other uses.”
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