KIUC's EV Team Takes Charge
two men smiling outside holding EV chargers

EV team with KIUC's public charger

Levels of EV chargers
Level 2 EV charger rebate

KIUC’s EV Team Takes Charge
by Allison Young

KIUC’s Electric Vehicle (EV) team is hitting the gas accelerator to meet demand for new infrastructure to support the growing influx of EVs on island.

According to the Hawaiʽi Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism, there are at least 681 EVs registered in Kauaʽi County. That number is expected to grow rapidly every year as drivers take advantage of incentives from the government and car manufacturers release new, exciting models.

Kyle Cremer, Commercial Energy Services Specialist, and Jonah Knapp, Staff Engineer, are the dedicated duo working hard behind the scenes to assist in the planning and development of Kauaʽi’s charging infrastructure.

The idea for an EV team was born a few years ago while Kyle was working with commercial members. He says, “I started receiving a lot of questions from business owners about future EV growth on island and the best ways to accommodate them.”

The team offers free EV charger site evaluations to commercial members. At these visits, they assess the proposed location and make recommendations regarding potential costs savings for the site owner. Part of this is determining if the existing service transformer – a device that reduces voltage so that it can provide power for services - can meet the added load from the EV charger, or if it needs to be upgraded. Depending on the distance from the transformer to the nearest meter, the cost of trenching an underground line can vary.

In addition to the free site evaluations, KIUC recently added a new rebate program. Commercial members can receive a rebate of $5,000 for the new installation of Level II Multi-Port Chargers. This rebate can be combined with the Hawaiʽi Energy rebate of $4,500 for a total of $9,500 in rebates. Rebates are also offered to retrofit existing charging stations.

Recently, Ching Young Village Shopping Center sought an evaluation from the EV team. Larry Harper, general manager, says, “We’ve been wanting to install an EV charging station here, and when we learned of the KIUC rebate program, we requested a site visit. Kyle and Jonah were very thorough in answering any questions that we had and provided us with all of the information needed to move forward with the EV charging station vendor.”

While KIUC assists with the logistics of where and how public EV chargers are installed, ultimately the number of chargers on island is dependent on landowners. KIUC is working to ensure that the electrical grid will be able to support the additional load with renewable energy via planned projects such as the West Kauaʽi Energy Project, which will supply 25% of the island’s energy needs and bring the island to more than 80% renewable.

Jonah says, “As EV adoption picks up, we eventually expect to see an increase in our peak demand. Part of the challenge with an increase in EVs is ensuring that the additional load doesn't negatively impact our grid. At KIUC, we’re continuing to look into ways we can efficiently support the added load of EV chargers, while still meeting our goals of becoming 100% renewable in the near future.”

KauaiEV President Sonja Kass says, “Having chargers strategically placed will help accelerate the inevitable transition to clean transportation on Kauaʽi. This means having them where the need exists, particularly places that will support residents who don't have access to home charging and visitors who can benefit from rental EVs.” Kauaʽi residents interested in buying their first EV or connecting with other EV owners can visit

To learn more about KIUC’s rebates, eligibility requirements and EV resources, visit or call 808.246.4300.