What is so important about Molokai’s water situation?

Maximum Protection, Minimal Change at Papohaku

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

Maximum Protection, Minimal Change at Papohaku


Papohaku sand dunes protect the water from runoff and nearby homes from high tide swells. Now the system that guards so much could receive some protection from human threats. The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) proposed increased protection for the Papohaku dune system. While the changes will not likely bring enforcement of stricter development rules, officials said they hope the protection would raise awareness of the dunes’ value.

Red dirt flows into the ocean where dunes were demolished on the west end of Molokai.
Photo contributed by Arleone Dibben-Young

A 500-page document dedicated solely to the preservation of the dune system at Papohaku stresses the environmental and cultural value of the system.…

Kamakou: 30 Years of Preservation

Friday, April 12th, 2013

Kamakou: 30 Years of Preservation

High in the mountains of Molokai, nature and history grow together in a forest that echoes with the riches of ancient Hawaii. A narrow boardwalk trails through depths of vivid green. Drops of water rest upon leaves and moss, and stillness is interrupted only by the occasional bird or damsel fly.

The pepe`opae boardwalk runs through Kamakou Preserve

Kamakou Preserve appears to be effortlessly pristine, an abundance of native life remained untouched since ancient times. But the prese
rve as it appears today is a result of 30 years of human determination. It represents an effort to reverse the effects of invasive species, restore native qualities and maintain a connection between culture and nature.…

Managing the North Shore

Sunday, April 7th, 2013

Traditional fishing practices along Molokai’s north shore could soon be supported by law if a new proposal is approved by the state.

The Mo`omomi area, which provides food for Ho`olehua homesteaders through its ocean resources, is closer to receiving official state designation as a community-based subsistence fishing area (CBSFA). Conservation group Hui Malama O Mo`omomi organized the official proposal for the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR)  and has presented it at a series of meetings with fishermen, homesteaders and the public. After the group has allowed time to receive public comments and questions, they will present it to the DLNR at a public hearing.…

Public Shoreline Management Meeting Friday

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Public Shoreline Management Meeting Friday

Community Contributed By Walter Ritte

On Friday March 29, Good Friday, an important meeting is being called by the Pala`au Moku of the Aha Kiole O Molokai. A “Shoreline Management Plan” from Ilio Point to Pelekunu on the north shore of Molokai will be presented.

Marchers, including a group of Molokai residents, gathered in Hilo for “March in March” on March 16.

The plan gives management powers of the shoreline resources to the community. Rules are needed in order to preserve the resources so our children and their children will be able to have free fish, limu, opihi, he`e, lobster, crabs, etc.…

Farming in the Shade

Monday, March 25th, 2013

Farming in the Shade

Joe Kennedy stands on his porch, surrounded by a food forest that has provided crops for seven years.

Along Hua`ai Road in Ho`olehua, there’s a wooded area grown over with weeds and bushes. This area is disguised as a simple, unkempt forest, but within it lays a flourishing garden of fruits and vegetables, all growing in the shade.

Molokai resident Joe Kennedy is the man behind the food forest. He began planting crops there last March, and a year later he has healthy, productive plants that use each other for support and protection. Avocado, taro and spinach are just a few of Kennedy’s crops.…

Mateo’s Mana`o

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

Mateo’s Mana`o


Danny Mateo’s time as Maui County council chair ended at noon Jan. 2. The next minute he started his work in the Mayor’s office as an executive assistant and liaison for the county and State legislature.

“Retirement for me is not in the immediate future,” he said over coffee at Kanemitsu Bakery Saturday. “I still have a lot to offer. As long as there is fire in the fireplace I will continue what I do.”

This means Mateo will continue to be a voice for the people of Molokai and work to improve the island, something he did for 10 years as a councilmember before he reached his term limit.  …

Solar Hot Water Molokai Training

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Sustainable Living Institute of Maui News Release
Want to learn about solar hot water installation? Now’s your chance, in an upcoming training program offered on Molokai. The Solar Hot Water Training Program is a hybrid course that combines six weeks of online classes followed by three final days of classes held on-site at the UH Molokai Education Center.

The training provides entry-level training in solar hot water design and installation. The curriculum introduces students to solar thermal applications, theory, safety issues, troubleshooting and monitoring, solar thermal design and installation, and licensing and permitting requirements. The course includes both classroom and hands-on experience.…

Know Your Water, Know Your Responsibilities

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

Know Your Water, Know Your Responsibilities

A panel of state officials spoke about issues surrounding water policies on Molokai. Photo by Eileen Chao.

Water is an essential component to life –without it, we would cease to exist. Few know this better than the agricultural farmers of Molokai, who each use nearly 6,000 gallons of water per acre per day, according to Alton Arakaki, extension agent for the University of Hawaii –College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (UH-CTAHR). While water is so important, many residents and farmers don’t know where it comes from, who’s responsible for it and what policies govern its distribution. In order to educate and guide the community in the ways of water, a panel was held on Molokai last Friday to provide information that is important to understanding the use of agricultural water on Molokai and its distribution via the Molokai Irrigation System (MIS).…

Monsanto Fund Donates $20,000 for Molokai Watershed Protection

Sunday, October 14th, 2012

Monsanto Molokai News Release

The Monsanto Fund awarded a $20,000 grant to The Nature Conservancy (TNC) of Hawaii for watershed protection at Kamakou Preserve on Molokai. Since 2006, the Monsanto Fund has contributed a total of $130,000 to TNC’s protection and restoration efforts of critical watershed and fragile ecosystems on Molokai.

Located high in the mountains of East Molokai, the 2,774-acre Kamakou Preserve is a rainforest like no other on the planet. This magnificent natural treasure not only shelters hundreds of native plants and animals, but also serves as an important source of water for the island and its people.

TNC’s work at Kamakou Preserve, in collaboration with the public and private landowners of the East Molokai Watershed Partnership, is focused on invasive animal and weed control.…

Ranch Seeks to Renew Water Permit

Sunday, July 29th, 2012

Ranch Seeks to Renew Water Permit

For the past five years, Molokai Properties Limited, better known as Molokai Ranch, has been illegally transporting drinking water to west end residents through water lines intended to serve agricultural users. Now, they are seeking to legalize their use of the Molokai Irrigation System (MIS) and obtain a permit to continue transporting water through the irrigation lines.

The Ranch is in the process of completing an Environmental Assessment (EA) of their use of the MIS. Receiving community feedback is a vital part that process according to Colette Sakoda, environmental planning program manager for Environet, the company contracted by the Ranch to assist in the EA.…