|The SS Pallada finds tsunami debris from Japan headed toward Hawai`i.|
The Pallada crew, from Far Eastern State Technical Fisheries University, is working with University of Hawai`i researchers at the International Pacific Research Center using an animated model to predict the path of the tsunami debris. The ship’s crew tested the debris for radiation and found none coming from the items they hauled on board. This is good news for the Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund volunteers who clean up the Ka`u Coast and are likely to come across debris from Japan over the next several years.
`AINA KOA PONO is planning to go ahead with its refinery and farm in Ka`u and “is now in negotiations with a publicly traded oil company to buy the entire output of its $350 million, 13,000-acre Big Island project for use in California,” says a story posted by Pacific Business News writer Duane Simogawa on Friday.
Plans to build the refinery are yet to be submitted to the county planning department and other agencies. Fields have yet to be planted with biofuel crops, but a test plot of various grasses that could be grown for biofuel has been planted along Wood Valley Road.
The PUC said the contract price for the project is “excessive, not cost-effective and, thus, is unreasonable and inconsistent with the public interest.”
PBN editors said, “The PUC’s responsibility is to decide how much money our state’s regulated utilities should be allowed to make, while keeping costs for consumers under control. And, to that end, we cannot fault the PUC for its decision to ‘just say no.’ While we unequivocally support our state’s push for renewable energy, we also happen to think the transfer can happen in a way that should allow businesses and households alike to balance their budgets.”
Said PBN, “The `Aina Koa Pono agreement did not, in our opinion, do enough to show an appreciation for the competing interests of energy independence and energy affordability.
“We don’t think Hawai`i businesses and households have an extra $100 million — or more — to spend on biofuels during the next two decades,” concluded PBN.
In its response to the PUC denial of the contract, HECO asked for an extension of time to file a motion for “reconsideration and/or clarification.” The PUC has given the HECO until Nov. 10. The state Consumer Advocate has already asked the PUC for a clarification of its decision to deny the `Aina Koa Pono contract.
`Aina Koa Pono says that the PUC must consider “long-term benefits in this situation and may find that short-term increased costs are reasonable, and not excessive or inconsistent with the state’s energy policies, and thus find a basis for approving the AKP contract.”
AKP predicts that without its large-scale biofuel production, HECO could be forced to import biofuel at an even higher cost than AKP is proposing. “This would be a substantial undermining of the State of Hawai`i Clean Energy Initiative and goals,” states `Aina Koa Pono.
The PUC stated that it does not oppose locally produced biofuels and is considering other projects, including those using algae as the source for biofuel. It also concluded that the `Aina Koa Pono project could deter the use of alternatives that could be less expensive in the future. `Aina Koa Pono says that its large-scale biofuel farms are the way to balance Hawai‘i’s energy alternatives.
`Aina Koa Pono is also promising 200 permanent jobs and 400 construction jobs.
|Entertainment for fundraising at Cooper Center. Photo by Julia Neal|
| Wok master Ron Serrao cooks for|
Mongolian BBQ. Photo by Julia Neal
These district community meetings rotate through the eight police districts on the Big Island. To aid police commanders in focusing on specific concerns, participation is encouraged only for persons who live or work in Ka`u.
Those interested but unable to attend may call Capt. Andrew Burian at 939-2520, stop by the Ka`u police station in Na`alehu or e-mail concerns or comments to email@example.com.
For an application, visit kauchamber.org or call Ron at 928-6471.
SPORTS OVER THE WEEKEND: Ka`u Trojans came up with 14 points in their game against Hawai`i Preparatory Academy in Kamuela on Saturday, but HPA took home the win by putting 49 points on the scoreboard.