If the latest bill gets passed, 100-percent of Hawaii‘s ground transportation will run on green energy by the year 2045. At present, the region relies heavily on imported fossil fuel, a major portion of which goes into powering over one million cars. Of these, only around 5,000 are electric vehicles. According to lawmakers, converting to renewables could significantly decrease the state’s carbon emissions.
Home to over 1.4 million people, Hawaii is currently leading the green energy race in the United States. The government has recently taken the decision to levy fines on utilities that rely on environmentally-harmful fossil fuels, starting from the year 2045. As to why the yet-to-be-approved bill is not a mandate, the chairman of Hawaii’s Energy and Environment committee Chris Lee said:
Nobody wants to step in and force people to get rid of cars that they might love now.
The state’s legislature, which began this Wednesday, will be reviewing the bill soon. It is important to note, however, that the bill limits itself to only ground transportation, since the technology behind renewable energy-powered aircraft is not readily available or even economically viable. Hugh Baker of the energy consulting firm HD Baker & Company went on to say:
Our ability to achieve it is really going to be dependent on what happens throughout the entire automotive industry. We can say we want 100 percent clean transportation technology, but the market in Hawaii is not nearly big enough by itself to move the whole global automotive industry. It will really take more than just Hawaii.