About The Kaʻū Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs Oct. 14, 2012

Trade winds are responsible for bringing clouds and moisture to Ka`u, but have been more intermittent in recent years.
Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
A DECREASE IN THE COOLING NORTHEAST TRADE WINDS and an increase in eastern trade winds over the past nearly four decades has been recorded by scientists at University of Hawai`i at Manoa. Their study was recently published in the Journal of Geophysical Research. For example, northeast trade wind days, which occurred 291 days per year 37 years ago at the Honolulu International Airport, now only occur 210 days per year.
      Jessica Garza, a meteorology graduate assistant at the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology at UH; Pao-Shin Chu, meteorology professor and head of the Hawai`i State Climate Office; Chase Norton and Thomas Schroeder analyzed 37 years of wind speed and direction and sea level pressure data from land-based weather stations, buoys and re-analysis data.
U.S. Geological Service map shows directions of tradewinds.
      Persistent northeast trade winds are important to the Hawaiian Islands because they affect wave height, cloud formation and precipitation over specific areas of the region. When trades fail to develop, the air can become dormant, and unpleasant weather can develop.
      Furthermore, Chu explained that the trades are the primary source of moisture for rain, and that a dramatic reduction could fundamentally change Hawai`i's overall climate.
      “We have seen more frequent drought in the Hawaiian Islands over the last 30 years,” he noted. “Precipitation associated with the moisture-laden northeasterly trades along the windward slopes of the islands contributes much of the overall rainfall in Hawai`i.”
      According to the National Drought Mitigation Center’s State Drought Monitor, nearly 50 percent of land in Hawai`i has experienced some degree of drought during the past year.
      While previous research has focused primarily on changes in trade wind intensities, this work, along with Chu’s 2010 study, is among the first to show changes in trade wind frequencies.
      Chu noted that the scientists are studying trade wind patterns in more detail. “In 2010, we only studied the trade wind changes at four major airports in Hawai`i (Honolulu, Kahului, Hilo, and Lihu`e). In the current paper, we expanded our study to include four ocean buoys in the vicinity of Hawai`i and a large portion of the North Pacific.” In the future, these scientists will be using model-simulated data to further understand the dynamics of rainfall and trade winds and estimate future patterns.

Department of Health map shows direction and concentration
of SO2 emitted from Halema`uma`u and Pu`u `O`o.
PAHALA HAS BEEN EXPERIENCING SO2 concentrations at the orange level in the early morning hours of the last several days. Department of Health defines orange level as Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups, including healthy individuals with mild asthma. The general public is not expected to be affected in this range. DOH website recommends avoiding outdoor activities that cause heavy breathing or breathing through the mouth. For more information, visit hiso2index.info

NATIVE HAWAIIAN EDUCATION in health and medicine will be bolstered through a $500,000 U.S. Department of Education grant to University of Hawai`i at Hilo. The money goes to programs to mentor and enrich children from kindergarten through high school. It will fund tutorials, field trips, internships and research conducted by Native Hawaiian college students. The program will be run by Na Pua Noeau, with guidance from its executive director, Dr. David Sing. He said that the aim is for Native Hawaiian health care professionals to shape the future of Native Hawaiian health.

Peter Adler
A MEDIATION PANEL FOR GEOTHERMAL ENERGY is being formed, as promised by Mayor Billy Kenoi. The issue that has divided the Puna community, where geothermal operations already exist, will be the subject of talks and studies led by Peter Adler, a facilitator hired by Hawai`i County with a $50,000 contract for his company, Accord 3.0. A Tom Callis story in this morning’s Hawai`i Tribune-Herald says Alder plans to establish a working group with about a dozen people during the next month to study data on geothermal’s impacts, including the health of people in neighborhoods around Puna Geothermal Venture’s power plant. Adler told Callis, “I don’t mind if people have a strong view and a bias…. I don’t expect anyone to come without predilections and proclivities.” 
      Pele Defense Fund president Palikapu Dedman, one of the early opposition leaders on geothermal power, told the Tribune-Herald, “I’m just happy they are doing any study. I think this should have been done a long time ago.”
      The study is expected to be completed by next spring. See accord3.com/pg68.cfm. For more information, email geothermalhealth@gmail.com.
      See more at hawaiitribune-herald.com.

Halau Hula O Kahikilaulani performed at Cooper Center's Mongolian BBQ yesterday. Photo by Julia Neal
Volunteers prepare for patrons at Mongolian BBQ.
Photo by Julia Neal
MONGOLIAN BBQ RAISED FUNDS for programs at Cooper Center in Volcano Village yesterday. Entertainment was provided by Joe Camacho on bass, No`eau Kalima and Joe Farias on `ukulele, Nahoku Gaspang on guitar and Halau Hula O Kahikilaulani. The event is held twice each year, with the next one in April 2013. 

THE ANNUAL KA`U FARM BUREAU MEETING takes place tomorrow at 5 p.m. at Pahala Community Center. Special guests are Rep. Clift Tsuji, chair of the committee on Agriculture for the state House of Representatives, and Scott Enright, deputy director of Hawai`i Department of Agriculture. The meeting includes election of the Board of Directors and potluck dinner. For more information, call Ka`u Farm Bureau president Chris Manfredi at 929-9550.

Lito Arkangel Photo from NPS
A CANDIDATE FORUM sponsored by League of Women Voters takes place tomorrow at Cooper Center in Volcano Village. State Rep. for District 3 candidates Fred Fogel, Marlene Hapai and Richard Onishi meet the public at 5:30 p.m. Prosecuting Attorney candidates Lincoln Ashida and Mitch Roth follow at 6:45 p.m. For more, visit lwv.org.

ENTERTAINER AND SONGWRITER Lito Arkangel shares his original compositions and other Hawaiian favorites Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. The event is free, and park entrance fees apply.