Hawaii is receiving its final shipment of coal this week, which Gov. David Ige called a huge step forward in the state’s transition to clean energy. What he meant was that local are about to pay a lot more for basic essentials.
A law put in place a couple of years ago will finally shut down the island’s last coal burning power plant. And since coal is the dirtiest * but cheapest - source of power for Oahu, it means that all else equal, power prices are about to skyrocket.
“In its time, coal was an important resource for Hawai‘i and I’d like to thank the workers who have run our last remaining coal plant,” Ige said in a statement. “Renewable energy projects to replace coal are coming online with more on the way.”
“Even as we face challenges in making this transition, it’s the right move for our communities and planet. Most importantly, it will leave Hawaiʻi a better place for our children and grandchildren.”
So noble, Scandinavian teenagers would approve: there is just one problem: as KHON2’s Always Investigating reports, replacement power projects are behind schedule due to unexpected global events with supply chain issues, so Oahu residents should prepare to pay even more for electricity this fall. In other words, Europe's catastrophic experience with the "Green transition" where an entire continent moved to "energy alternatives" some 30 years before it was ready to replace fossil fuels, is coming to at least one American state.
In the meantime, consumers can either cut back on power, try solar and batteries, or pay more for oil-generated power — which costs as much as five times more than coal.