Podcast Highlights Sustainability on Molokai

Wednesday, August 9th, 2023

By Jack Kiyonaga | Editor  

Hawaii Public Radio (HPR) launched a new podcast last month called “O ko makou Hawaii keia: This Is Our Hawaii.” It is HPR’s premiere “digital-first” podcast.

Episode four in the series is called, “On Molokai, sovereignty starts with food” and examines Molokai’s efforts to establish local food and resource sustainability. The episode features interviews with Molokai’s own Todd Yamashita and Malia Akutagawa. 

“Molokai’s story is a vital piece of this podcast because of how the tight-knit community has come together to focus on food sustainability and resource sovereignty — efforts that can be an example to the rest of the state of how Hawaiians and locals can have more of a say in the future of our ʻaina,” said Russell Subiono, host of “This Is Our Hawaii.” …

Kupuna ‘Ai Program

Wednesday, August 9th, 2023

Sust’ainable Molokai News Release

Help us continue to provide fresh, locally grown foods to our island’s kupuna!

We’re thrilled to announce the ongoing pursuit of our Kupuna ‘Ai program, which allows community members to purchase fresh, locally grown food boxes and donate them for delivery to local kupuna in need. We’re collaborating with organizations such as the Molokai Rural Health Community Association, which has active kupuna programs, to deliver weekly community supported agriculture (CSA) boxes containing locally grown foods like kalo pa’a, bananas, papaya, and eggs via the Sustʻainable Molokai Mobile Market completely free of charge to our island’s kupuna. 

The Kupuna ‘Ai program was launched in March and is a way for us to give back to the community and support our kupuna, who have played such a vital role in shaping our island’s culture and history.…

Subsistence Survey Update

Wednesday, August 9th, 2023

Sust’ainable Molokai News Release

Get a coupon for free poi or kalo pa’a when you complete the 2023 Molokai subsistence study update survey. Only available to the next 100 people who complete the survey as a coupon for Sustʻainable Molokaiʻs Mobile Market. All English-speaking Molokai residents aged 18 or older can take the survey one time. 

Why participate? It has been 30 years since we have had updated, island-wide information on subsistence practices like hunting, fishing, gathering, and farming on Molokai. The 2023 Molokai Subsistence Study Update is our chance to update our Molokai-specific data on subsistence practices and food security.…

Kamakani Farms: Salt, Chickens, Tomatoes—and Wind

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2023

Kamakani Farms: Salt, Chickens, Tomatoes—and Wind

by Paul Hanley | Community Reporter 

“I didn’t want to do conventional farming,” says Cameron Hiro, who operates Kamakani Farms in Hoolehua with his wife Jacqueline and their ohana. A fourth-generation homesteader, Hiro resides on agriculture lands where his mother Janice and her late husband, Cameron’s stepfather Joseph Pele, and other family members once grew vegetables.

Though Cameron didn’t want to farm he stayed in the food industry. After high school, he studied restaurant, culinary and catering management, which led to a 35-year career in cooking, catering, and event management. In 2017, he and his brothers Raymond Hiro and John Pele became owners of Hiro’s Ohana Grill at Hotel Molokai.…

Free Mobile Market Delivery for EBT/SNAP Customers

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2023

Sustʻāinable Molokai News Release

Sustʻāinable Molokai’s Mobile Market is proud to announce free mobile delivery for EBT/SNAP customers as part of the Da Bux Program. With no minimum purchase required, this new service aims to make healthy and fresh produce more accessible to the Molokai community. 

Customers can order online and receive their groceries at their doorstep, with free delivery available for EBT/SNAP recipients. Visit to purchase fresh, locally-grown, and produced food. Our online store opens weekly from Sunday at 3 p.m. to Tuesday at 12 p.m. Order pickups are on Thursday and deliveries are every Friday.

The Da Bux Program is designed to support Molokai’s local food system by increasing access to healthy food options for all members of the community.…

Sustainability Speaker Series

Wednesday, July 5th, 2023

Maui County News Release 

The County of Maui Environmental Protection and Sustainability Division will host the second installment of its speaker series “Sustainability Together: Community-led Regenerative Action” on July 10 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. at the Molokai Community Health Center. The event will be streamed live on Akaku Maui Community Media Channel 54.

Panelists at the July 10 event include Molokai Homestead representatives, community organizer and solar energy technician Todd Yamashita, Leilani Chow of Sustʻainable Molokai, Keaʻa Davis of Shake Energy Collaborative and Harumi McClure of Haru Energy.

In the second of the four-part speaker series, participants will gain insights into the household-level impacts of energy insecurity and how different communities have successfully mobilized to build resilience through the use of renewable solar energy.…

Molokai Subsistence Survey

Wednesday, June 28th, 2023

Sust’ainable Molokai News Release 

The Molokai Subsistence Survey from 1993 shows important informated about how residents get their food. Now, Sust’ainable Molokai is conducting an update to that survey. Please consider taking between five and 30 minutes to complete the 2023 Molokai Subsistence Study Update. All English-speaking Molokai residents over the age of 18 are eligible to complete the survey. The survey can be found online at or can be completed in person at community events or at the Sustʻainable Molokai office. 

In 1993, the governor commissioned the Molokai Subsistence Task Force to study subsistence on Molokai. The study found that the average Molokai family got 28 percent of their food from subsistence activities like hunting, fishing, gathering from the ocean, and raising animals.…

Molokai’s First Community Solar Project Nears Completion

Wednesday, June 21st, 2023

Molokai’s First Community Solar Project Nears Completion

By Jack Kiyonaga, Reporter

An array of solar panels anchored into the stoney ground near Kawela Plantation represent Molokai’s first completed community solar project. While not online yet, Molokai residents can now sign up for community solar. 

Community based renewable energy (CBRE) is a program through Hawaiian Electric that allows residents the benefits of solar power without having to own solar panels, which is especially beneficial for renters or those who can’t install their own rooftop system. The 250 kilowatt (kW) Kawela CBRE was built and designed by Neighborhood Power, which has leased land from the Kawela Plantation for the solar field.…

Molokai Subsistence Study Update

Wednesday, June 21st, 2023

Sust’ainable Molokai News Release

Did you know that in 1993, 28 percent of the food Molokai families ate came from subsistence activities like hunting, fishing, gathering from the ocean, and raising animals? For Native Hawaiian families, 38 percent of food came from subsistence (Matsuoka et al, 1994). 

This summer, Sustʻainable Molokai will conduct a research study to update this information. A survey will be launched in late June 2023 and will be available online and in person at community events. All English-speaking Molokai residents over the age of 18 will be eligible to complete the survey. The survey will take between five and 30 minutes.…

Molokai Energy Planning Up for Review

Wednesday, June 7th, 2023

Molokai Energy Planning Up for Review

By Catherine Cluett Pactol | Editor

The first phase of a revolutionary Molokai community renewable energy planning process is wrapping up. The Molokai Community Energy Resilience Action Plan, facilitated by Sust’ainable Molokai’s Clean Energy Hui, began taking shape in January 2022 and over the past year and a half, its community-driven goals have garnered immense input and support, creating a road map for the island’s energy future. 

“Our vision is to develop a portfolio of clean energy projects that achieve 100 percent renewable energy for Molokai that are technically feasible and economically feasible… in line with our community’s values, our lifestyle, our goals, and are supported by the community,” said Leilani Chow, coordinator of the Molokai Clean Energy Hui.…