Sustainability

The Importance of the ‘Aha Moku System

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

Community Contributed

Opinion by members of the Kawela Moku

This represents individual mana`o from members of the Kawela Moku, and is not intended to speak for the Aha Kiole as a whole.

Hawaii Mowat on historical perspective

In the past century, the health of Hawaii’s ecosystem has severely declined. With the change of powers, came the change of the way we did things in Hawaii. Agriculture, development, invasive species, etc. has wreaked havoc on Hawaii’s natural resources and it seems as if the western way of land management does not work for Hawaii so the ancient yet sophisticated system must be revived.…

Molokai’s Champion of Change

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

Molokai’s Champion of Change

Jon Brito calls the summer he decided to take a break from pursuing his Bachelor’s degree a defining moment in his life. That was when he solidified his passion for conservation and natural resource management — a passion that’s now landed him a national honor. The 24-year-old from Molokai has been selected as one of the White House’s Champions of Change that recognizes those around the country who engage the next generation of conservation stewards — and one of only two youth leaders to be awarded.

“Jon’s commitment to the environment and his selfless mission to protect Hawai’i’s precious land and culture is inspiring,” said U.S.…

Panel Speaks on GMOs and Biotech

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Panel Speaks on GMOs and Biotech

Agriculture and food sustainability is a growing interest in the community and as technologies change, varied practices lead to clashing opinions on the best agriculture methods and safety. To address some of the latest controversial topics in the industry, the Molokai Farm Bureau hosted a presentation last Tuesday, led by three independent experts in ag technology. They answered questions and provided educational outreach to the community advocating scientific advances in biotechnology and Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs).

“A lot of what’s going on in agriculture right now is because somehow the technology and communication have not synced,” said Mae Nakahata, an agronomist at Hawaii Commercial and Sugar Company on Maui, secretary of the Hawaii Farm Bureau and vice president of the Hawaii Agriculture Foundation.…

Collecting Molokai’s Metals

Friday, February 28th, 2014

Collecting Molokai’s Metals

As your car deteriorates on Molokai’s rugged roads, and outdated appliances are replaced with newer models, you may find an assembly of rusted-out materials decorating your yard. But if you find yourself going mad over your metal collection, there is now a group you can call to gather your junk cars, appliances and mixed metals.

Refrigerant Recycling Inc. (RRI) is here to serve Molokai for the next three years. The Oahu-based recycling and refurbishing company is working hand-in-hand with Maui County, dedicated to help make metal disposal less of a headache for the community.

“We’re holding a community workday to go around helping rural parts of the island and to assist people who need help with recycling their items,” said Molokai-born RRI project manager Mike Diorec.…

Ikehu Molokai Project

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

Princeton Energy News Release

It is our goal to keep island residents informed of the progress of the Ikehu Molokai project.  As everyone knows, the grid on Molokai has some problems, like high costs for Molokai residents and businesses, blackouts and brownouts, and a high carbon footprint.  The Ikehu Molokai project aims to address these problems by converting the island’s electric system to renewable energy. The project is a joint effort between Princeton Energy and Molokai Ranch.

Maui Electric Company (MECO) has done their part to solve these problems, taking financial losses to minimize rate hikes, and working with the University of Hawaii’s Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) to install a battery system to stabilize the grid. …

Habitat for Humanity Partnering for Solar

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Habitat for Humanity Partnering for Solar

Molokai is making steps towards becoming a clean energy community as 163 homes will be receiving free photovoltaic (PV) solar units while cutting their energy bills in half. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) has granted $32,600 to Molokai’s Habitat for Humanity in support of their partnership with solar company Kala Power Inc. and the Department of Hawaiian Homelands (DHHL). The deal will combine affordable housing and renewable energy solutions for low-income Native Hawaiian families living on homestead land.

“Electricity is one of the highest costs all Molokai residents and businesses have to contend with so projects to help alleviate the high costs of fuel as reflected in electrical rates is a tremendous positive for Molokai,” said Halealoha Ayau, DHHL’s acting district supervisor for Molokai, via email.…

Energy Festival Nixed Over Renewable Project Concerns

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Amid recent concerns over proposed renewable energy project Ikehu Molokai, I Aloha Molokai (IAM) has cancelled its third annual Renewable Energy Festival that was scheduled for January. The nonprofit feared the event would act as a showcase for Ikehu, falsely implying IAM’s endorsement of the project. While IAM leaders say they feel the project has potential for Molokai, they are not ready to support it based on what they consider to be a lack of public input.

“We do not want [the energy festival] to be used to help push a process that does not have community buy-in yet,” said Kanohowailuku Helm, president of IAM, a local nonprofit that supports community-based energy solutions, in an email to Maui County officials.…

Planting Seeds for the Future

Sunday, November 17th, 2013

Before Western contact, Native Hawaiians were able to feed a population of one million while following a sustainable way of life, according to the documentary, “Na Kupu Mana`olana — Seeds of Hope.” But in the last 50 years alone, half of Hawaiian farmland has been developed and today, 85 percent of the state’s food is imported.

“We are currently in a crisis,” said Robert Harris, director of Sierra Club Hawaii, in the documentary.

The film, produced by The Hawaii Rural Development Council (HRDC), premiered on Molokai at Kalaniana`ole Hall Saturday night. It highlighted the state’s agricultural evolution and the unsustainable challenges we’re currently facing as a community.…

The Poop Scoop

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

What happens after you flush

You flush your toilet an average of five times per day, but have you ever wondered what happens once it leaves the porcelain throne? By the time it reaches the end of the sewer line and completes a lengthy purifying process, not only is your wastewater cleaner than it started, but one more thing is clear. The wastewater facility workers who sort through the thick of it, surface with this message: If you think you can dispose of your strangest unmentionables down the drain, you’re wrong.

“There are no secrets. If you flush it down the toilet, we see it,” said Guy Joao, an operator at the Kaunakakai Wastewater Reclamation Facility.…

Molokai Represented at World Wilderness Congress

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

Molokai Represented at World Wilderness Congress

Community Contributed

By Maile Naehu

Recently my husband Hano and I were invited to be delegates at the 10th World Wilderness Congress, or “Wild 10.” As we prepared for a presentation on Ocean Resource Management emphasizing fishponds, we had no idea what was in store of us in Salamanca, Spain.

On Oct. 1, we left our humble home to embark on a day and a half journey to Europe where the oldest university on the planet calls home. We arrived to a primarily Spanish speaking land until we met up with the other thousand or so delegates from around the globe.…