Environment

News stories regarding Molokai’s outdoor environment

Proposed Solar Program Changes

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Proposed Solar Program Changes

Molokai has the highest percentage of renewable energy compared to total electric usage of any island at 51 percent, according to Maui Electric Company (MECO). With that high percentage, however, comes challenges for the island’s small electric grid – as well as unfair prices for customers without solar, claims MECO. The company is proposing changes that would temporarily halt the installation of rooftop solar on Molokai – and many customers and local solar companies aren’t happy about it.

In a program called Net Metering Program (NEM), customers with solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are paid by the utility company for excess energy the panels generate at retail rate.…

Understanding Soils Workshop

Friday, February 20th, 2015

UH CTAHR release

Hawaii has more than 140 different soil types, the most diverse of anywhere on the planet. Each soil is managed differently and responds to different nutrients and amendments. The formation of soil is influenced by temperature, rainfall, slope, and also age and content of the parent material from which the soil is formed. Volcanic eruptions are all unique in what types of soil it will create over time, some very rich in nutrients and others devoid of key nutrients. Having this knowledge your unique soil will help farmer and gardener better manage their soil for optimal growth of food, utility and ornamental plants.…

Hula Girl’s Flower

Friday, February 20th, 2015

Hula Girl’s Flower

Community Contributed

By Glenn I. Teves, UH CTAHR County Extension Agent

The local tradition of lei giving and receiving are an important part of local celebrations, especially May Day and graduation celebrations, bedecked with leis of all colors, shapes, and fragrances. Lei flowers, especially plumeria and its alluring fragrance remind us of bygone days, of growing up, and of special events in our lives. Plumeria is also an old favorite of hula dancers.

Plumeria, also known as Frangipani and pua melia, is native to Tropical America, and include two main species, Plumeria obtusa and acuminata that will cross to produce an array of colors, including white, yellow, pink, and red.…

Molokai Food Hub in Operation

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

Sust`aina ble Molokai News Release

Sust`aina ble Molokai’s newly launched Molokai Food Hub is seeking locally grown fruits and vegetables.  In January, we officially became the vendor for the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) for Maunaloa Elementary School.  This is a federally funded snack program, which allows students to receive a snack of a fresh fruit or vegetable two to three times per week.  As the vendor, we are aiming to provide as much Molokai-grown fruit and vegetables as possible, so please call or email us if you would like to be a supplier (560-5410 or harmonee@sustainablemolokai.org).

The program is open to growers who can provide 60 servings of fresh fruit or vegetable (minimum serving size of 1/2 cup), and they will be paid fair market value. …

Controlled Burn Clears Hazardous Brush

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

The Maui Fire Department (MFD) conducted its first Molokai-based controlled burn last week, clearing out 50 acres of overgrown brush behind residents’ homes in Kalama`ula between Feb. 4 and 7.

Nearly 40 firefighters from Molokai, Maui, Hawaii Island and the Pacific Northwest participated in the exercise, which, besides decreasing the potential for wildfire, also provided live training for firefighters.

“It’s a good area to mitigate hazards,” said Kaunakakai Fire Captain Henry Lindo, explaining that fires in that area tend to spread quickly, pushed forward by winds.

Maui County’s first controlled burn took place in December 2013 in West Maui, and other islands have conducted controlled burns before, but this is Molokai’s first.…

Mud-Caked Classroom

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Mud-Caked Classroom

Local farm brings lessons of the `aina to life

Third grader Kamalani Peltier, holding a tadpole, was one of 40 Kilohana School students to visit Simms Farm last month. Photo by Colleen Uechi.

A handful of Kilohana Elementary school students stared down uncertainly into the thick, gloopy mud of the lo`i kalo below them.

“Come on, ladies, let’s go! Jump in!”

Kilohana educational assistant Teon Simmons was trying to coax them into the lo`i, where three of their schoolmates were already wading and pulling weeds from the ankle deep muck. Wedged in the middle of the patch, farm owner Jo-Ann Simms was teaching the students how to gently swing long bunches of weeds to shake excess mud back into the lo`i.…

Students Earn GIS Certificate

Friday, January 30th, 2015

UHMCM News Release

University of Hawaii Maui College, Molokai (UHMCM) is proud to announce that in the Fall 2014 semester, four of our Agriculture students successfully earned a certificate in Geographic Information System (GIS) in Ecosystem Management.  These students are Kristen Coelho, Patricia Pali, Kawaila Purdy and Tyson Pactol.

To earn this certificate, students must pass the Introduction to GIS as well as GIS in Ecosystem Management.  Both classes required the students to collect an intense amount of localized geographic data through a computerized software and use the data for in-depth analysis, planning and mapping.

GIS is a useful skill in today’s world and frequently used in many careers.…

Bottles for Change Campaign

Friday, January 30th, 2015

HoloHI News Release

A Hawaii educator plans to run and bike 750 miles around Hawaii in 31 days to launch school-based conservation initiative called Bottles for Change that challenges keiki to help reduce Hawaii’s plastic footprint.

A new study estimates that there are more than 250,000 tons of plastic floating in oceans around the world, destroying marine habitat and contaminating our water and food supply. Lindy Shapiro, founder of the nonprofit Bodhi Education Project on Maui, plans to take an unprecedented, coastal expedition around the Hawaiian Islands named holoHI (the Hawaiian word “holo” means to run or ride on) – kicked off before sunrise on Jan.…

Controlled Fire Planned for Kalama`ula

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Maui Fire Department News Release

Between Feb. 2 and Feb. 7, Maui County Fire Department will employ prescribed, or controlled, fire in the Kalama`ula area. This multi-agency effort will be an exercise to satisfy national requirements to be certified as a Type 3 Incident Management Team, provide live fire training to personnel and remove hazardous levels of overgrown plant material.

During these dates, controlled fires may take place between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. The live training will be conducted north of the old Kalama`ula area and west of the Kalama`ula Mauka subdivision. The burn area will consist of 60 acres total, broken down into separate blocks to be burned each day of the exercise.…

Investigation of East Molokai Crash Continues

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

More details on a Jan. 16 forced emergency aircraft landing in east Molokai have surfaced in a preliminary report recently released by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

According to the report, a privately owned Cessna 172 carrying a pilot and three passengers “collided with terrain” in Ualapue on Molokai’s east end around 2 p.m. that Friday. There were no casualties, although one passenger was rescued in serious condition and the other three with minor injuries.

The plane was owned by Hawaiian Night Lights, LLC. Pilot Michael Richards, a certified flight instructor, was giving a flying lesson to a Japanese citizen while her parents accompanied them in the plane.…