Hawaiian Electric Companies has rolled out a statewide plan that sets a goal for Molokai of 100 percent renewable energy by 2020. Over the next three years, the electric utility is proposing 1.4 megawatts (MW) of additional photovoltaic energy to be added to the island’s existing 2.3 MW of energy coming from rooftop solar panels, as well as 5 MW of wind energy. The plan also calls for a transition to biofuel for “some” of the island’s 12 MW of energy currently being generated from diesel fuel.
“Molokai will serve as a blueprint to increase the cost-effective use of renewables for the remainder of the state and help us obtain real–world experience in running an island grid with 100 percent renewable energy,” states the report, filed with the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) last December and recently presented at the fourth annual Maui Energy Conference.…
By Bruce S. Anderson, DLNR Division of Aquatic Resources Administrator
With the recent submission of a Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area (CBSFA) designation proposal for Mo`omomi and the North Coast of Molokai, and upcoming public scoping meetings, the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) would like to address some frequently asked questions. The proposed CBSFA extends from `Ilio Point in the west to Kaholaiki Bay in the east, from the shoreline out to one nautical mile.
What is a CBSFA?
A CBSFA is a type of marine managed area established by State law for the specific purpose of “reaffirming and protecting fishing practices customarily and traditionally exercised for purposes of native Hawaiian subsistence, culture, and religion.”
Who is behind this proposal?…
DLNR News Release
The `Aha Moku Advisory Committee (AMAC) has scheduled a series of public meetings this month to seek comment from communities in `ahupua`a districts as it develops and adopts rules for its operation and administration.
Created by the Legislature in 2012 via Act 288, the `Aha Moku Advisory Committee is attached to the State Dept. of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) and is mandated to bring the voices of the `ahupua`a communities forward to the Department on issues related to natural and cultural resources.
“AMAC may advise the DLNR on issues related to land and natural resources management through the ‘Aha Moku system of best management practices,” said Leimana DaMate, AMAC executive director.…
Community members viewed the names of the original homesteading families on display at the celebration. Photo by Colleen Uechi.
When homesteaders first took up residence on Molokai lands, they had to start from the ground up. Families worked hard together to put in roads and set up large wooden tanks to catch the rainwater for drinking and farming. They combined labor and resources to sow crops and purchase farming equipment.
Ninety years later, Ho`olehua’s fertile lands are inhabited by their thriving descendants, who own homes, grow crops and use the infrastructure put in place by their ancestors.
Last week, the Ho`olehua Homestead Association remembered its history at the homestead’s 90th anniversary celebration.…
By Glenn I. Teves
The next round of the Hawaiian Homesteaders Gardening Program will start in late November. The purpose of this educational program is to increase homestead families access to fresh vegetables. Participants will be taught all aspects of establishing and managing a garden, and growing vegetables adapted to Molokai.
This program is open to all Hawaiian homesteaders residing on Molokai, and participation will be limited to 15 families. Classes will be held two to three times each month from 4:30 to 6 p.m., with occasional workshops. The choice of a Tuesday or Thursday meeting date will be determined by participants.…
Princeton Energy News Release
Aloha! Princeton Energy Group and Half Moon Ventures want to express our gratitude to the Molokai community for welcoming us once again with great hospitality and warmth this past May. It was wonderful to visit with old friends, as well as develop new relationships on the island, as we continue to work together as partners on the Molokai Island Energy Project (formerly known as Ikehu Molokai). We held extensive community meetings throughout the island and received valuable feedback from residents. We continue to believe that the Molokai Island Energy Project will be accomplished by a long-term collaboration between community groups, residents, and the planning team.…
Molokai’s gas prices are dropping–but still hover well above Hawaii’s average. Photos by Colleen Uechi.
Recently, many Hawaii residents have been breathing a sigh of relief at the gas pump. Across the state and the country, prices have dropped more than a dollar over the past year and are continuing to fall.
A year ago, gas prices in Hawaii averaged $4.21 cents a gallon, according to price-tracking website GasBuddy.com. Prices are now at $2.89. The average throughout the U.S. is even cheaper, as prices have tumbled from $3.34 to $2.29 a gallon within the last year.
On Molokai, prices are also declining, but the overall rates are more than a dollar more expensive than rates on neighboring islands.…
Young enthusiasts show off their harvest. All photos courtesy of Harmonee Williams.
At last month’s Taro Field Day, Molokai residents celebrated cultural and agricultural traditions, harvested their own kalo to grown in their backyards, and participated in a prestigious cooking contest honoring a queen’s commitment to taro.
The annual event offers community members a chance to learn about and be a part of efforts to preserve dozens of historic taro species, as well as taste test poi and kulolo made from varieties grown here on Molokai at the UH Maui Community College Farm in Ho`olehua. Attendees could also venture into the field after receiving a labelled map to select and harvest plants of their favorite varieties.…
Molokai residents voiced largely opposition two weeks ago to a proposed merger between Hawaiian Electric and NextEra, a Florida-based energy company. The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is gathering public feedback on the proposed $4.3 million merger and will make a decision within the next six months. Molokai’s feedback, said Commission Chair Randall Iwase, has been in keeping with what they’ve heard so far around the state.
“The commission is not required to hold these sessions, but it was opinion of all three commissioners that it was important and appropriate to hear from the public,” said Iwase.
A majority of Molokai attendees testified that they opposed the merger.…
Sust`aina ble Molokai and UH Cooperative Extension Service News Release
The Molokai Taro Variety Field Day will be held on Saturday, Sept. 19 at the Molokai Applied Research and Demonstration Farm, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The annual event has been organized by the UH Cooperative Extension Service since 1985, and is something that many residents look forward to. This year promises to be another outstanding event.
An important highlight of this year’s Taro Day is The Queen’s Challenge Taro Competition. This year, Molokai has been selected to host the competition, which is held annually at selected sites around the Pae `Aina in honor of Queen Emma Kalanikaumakaamano Kaleleonalani Na`ea Rooke, who recognized the value of the Hawaiian taro varieties and has written in detail on methods she used to produce large kalo (taro).…