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LNG could ease Hawaii’s high energy costs

Living amid the warm breezes and sandy beaches of the Hawaiian Islands comes at a cost. Residential electricity customers in Hawaii in April paid three times the national average for each kilowatt hour they used to run their refrigerators, TVs and ceiling fans. Much of that power came from oil-fired generating plants.

Hawaii residents who use natural gas to fuel their stoves and heat their water paid more than five times the national average last year.

Rather than accept rising costs as inevitable, the state government and Hawaii’s utilities are working to bring online more renewables, including wind, solar and biofuel power. And they’re looking at whether importing liquefied natural gas could help reduce fuel costs and meet new environmental regulations.

The 50th state is similar to the 49th state, Alaska, where high energy costs also are pushing residents and their elected leaders to find a way to use more natural gas and less oil. Maybe Alaska’s natural gas could help Hawaii, too.

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