Environment

News stories regarding Molokai’s outdoor environment

Fishing Tensions Headed to Court

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

A confrontation between Oahu divers and Molokai fishermen is headed to court. The incident, in which four Molokai men are being accused of illegally boarding a vessel in state waters, came as a culmination of rising tensions between off-island fishermen known to load up on Molokai catch and island residents who depend on those resources to feed their families.

In May, the four men allegedly threatened a group of Oahu divers fishing off Molokai and were recently arrested on felony charges. Robin Dudoit, 57, Floyd Kapuni, 31, Kaiula English, 28, and Albert Dudoit Jr., 27, were arrested by the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) and the Maui Police Department on Nov.…

12 Days Adrift: The Story of Ron Ingraham

Monday, December 15th, 2014

12 Days Adrift: The Story of Ron Ingraham

Ron Ingraham aboard the Malia at Kaunakakai Harbor after his rescue. Photo by Catherine Cluett

What began as a routine fishing trip to Lanai on Thanksgiving Day turned into a 12-day battle of survival at sea for Molokai’s Ron Ingraham. While his friends planned his funeral and authorities gave up the search, Ingraham lived on fish he caught, bailed all night while 20-foot waves crashed over his boat, and — having nearly given up all hope — “jerry-rigged” his water-sodden radio for one final signal for help that led to his rescue and a reunion with his estranged son.

Sixty-seven-year-old Ingraham wasn’t expecting a mishap at sea, but his lifestyle prepared him for it.…

Subsistence Fishing Designation Moves Forward

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Subsistence Fishing Designation Moves Forward

 

Community members are joining with state officials to develop a designation for Molokai’s north shoreline that would sustainably support marine resources, protect traditional fishing practices, prohibit commercial harvest and facilitate community involvement in resource management decisions.

The Mo`omomi Community Based Subsistence Fishing Area (CBSFA) would extend from Ilio Point on the northwestern tip of Molokai, east to Kaholaiki Bay, near Pelekunu Valley. As it is currently written, the CBSFA would follow the contours of the coastline and extend out one half mile. The Kawa`aloa Bay Protected Area is a subzone with the CBSFA, with a subset of rules specific to it.…

Learning the Business of Farming

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

A group of Molokai farmers were looking to cultivate something beyond bananas and broccoli on Nov. 20: their business and marketing abilities. About a dozen local farmers and ranchers gathered at Hikiola to attend the Agriculture Business Development Training workshop to refine their skills at winning customers and securing funding.

With the county moratorium on genetically engineered crops currently on hold, many farmers are uncertain about the possible effects on their businesses. Although the workshop’s guest speaker, Nicole Milne, didn’t have concrete answers, she said laying out and following smart plans will keep farmers on the right path.

“I feel like people’s goals for their businesses and their farming ideals are fairly secure,” said Milne, associate vice president for programs for The Kohala Center, a Hawaii Island-based research and education organization.…

Bullet Shot Through Molokai Home

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

Bullet Shot Through Molokai Home

A west Molokai couple woke up to an alarming surprise last month, when a bullet was shot into their home during the night. The homeowners, who live at the north end of Papohaku Beach, said they are not looking for an arrest, but want to share a message of hunting safety.

“I think it’s great if someone wants to get meat for their family,” said the homeowner, who wished to remain anonymous. “I’m not anti-gun. I grew up in rural Montana and went to my first hunter safety class when I was six years old. One of the first things we learned is to be aware of your background – know where your bullet is going to go.”

About midnight on Monday, Nov.…

Land Trust Raising Funds for Service Learning Center

Friday, November 21st, 2014

MLT News Release

The Molokai Land Trust (MLT) is planning an exciting new Operations and Service Learning Center in Kualapu`u. To make it a reality, we need your help in funding the project. The Learning Center will provide hands-on conservation educational opportunities for the student population and interested community members on the lands MLT stewards: MLT’s Mokio and Kawaikapu Preserves and The Nature Conservancy’s Mo`omomi Preserve.

The Molokai Land Trust just launched a social media crowd-funding capital campaign on IndieGoGo.com.  The ambitious, achievable goal of $25,000 is testing the waters.  The campaign runs for only 40 days.  MLT needs your help in getting a solid start on the goal.  …

Judge Orders Hold on GE Enforcement

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

A federal judge in Honolulu has ordered a temporary hold on enforcement of the moratorium on genetically engineered crops passed by Maui County voters on Nov. 4. Last week, Monsanto and other parties filed a lawsuit against the County of Maui, challenging the moratorium. Judge Barry Kurren granted Monsanto and other plaintiffs in the suit a temporary injunction until Dec. 5.

The county stated last week it was preparing to enforce the moratorium pending the Election Officer’s certification of election results, but the judge’s injunction will put a hold on enforcement until further court action.

Injunction is a court order for a party to do, or refrain from doing, specific acts.…

Featured Farmer

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

Featured Farmer

HTFG Molokai News Release

Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers (HTFG) is a statewide nonprofit organization, dedicated to tropical fruit research, education, marketing and promotion. The Molokai Chapter is made up of members that are home gardeners, small scale farmers and interested community members who meet monthly to share ideas about promoting products, skills and agricultural opportunities.

This month’s featured farmer is Michigan-born Jamie Ronzello who runs her family-owned Barking Deer Farm off Maunaloa Highway. Years ago, her college degree focused on cultural anthropology, and she is right at home farming on Molokai with its rich history. Jamie is a super busy, young farmer who delivers her “Beyond Organic” fresh vegetables to Molokai stores and Paddlers Inn and enjoys being a beekeeper.…

County Poised to Enforce GE Moratorium, Lawsuit Expected

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

County Poised to Enforce GE Moratorium, Lawsuit Expected

Molokai agricultural land. Photo by Edwin Mendija

A highly disputed voter initiative to ban the growing of genetically engineered crops passed in Maui County in last Tuesday’s General Election by a narrow margin of 50 percent to 48 percent, with just over 800 votes’ difference.

On Molokai, all of the island’s four precincts voted no by a ratio of nearly two to one, with 63 percent voting against the moratorium and 34 percent favoring it island-wide, according to stats from Hawaii’s elections website.

The initiative calls for a moratorium until a detailed environmental impact study of the harms associated with growing genetically engineered organisms has been completed and reviewed by the County Council.…

GMO Moratorium Survey Results

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

GMO Moratorium Survey Results

The MOM Hui News Release

Out of a total of 219 Molokai residents who participated in an online survey, 109, or 49.77 percent, are in support of a moratorium (temporary suspension) of all GE operations and practices within Maui County. The moratorium would last until an environmental and public health impact study is conducted and finds the proposed cultivation practices to be safe and harmless.  Of the total survey participants, 110, or 50.23 percent, were not in favor of this bill.

Chart courtesy of Mom Hui

One of those in favor shared that, “because of their history of contamination, collusion, coercion and endless greed for capital and control, companies like Monsanto cannot be trusted, and therefore independent studies need to be conducted to insure these practices taking place on our island are safe for its inhabitants and future inhabitants.”

Another individual argued that, “the State Constitution protects the public trust.…