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.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs Nov. 23, 2012

Ka`u Forest Reserve Management Plan calls for fencing 12,000 acres of forest. Photo by Rob Shallenberger
KA`U FOREST RESERVE is a target of the Pele Defense Fund, which filed a suit this week in state Third Circuit Court to challenge the proposed Ka`u Forest Reserve Management Plan. The suit objects to the state’s determination that the plan would have no significant environmental impacts and asks for an Environmental Impact Statement. A statement on Pele Defense Fund’s website at www.peledefensefund.org says “the decision not to prepare an EIS “required that the EIS issue must be decided by the Court."
Ka`u Forest Reserve shown in green.
Pele Defense Fund president
Palikapu Dedman
      Palikapu Dedman, president of Pele Defense Fund, listed a number of reasons for the suit.  He contended that: “Since the '70s until present, tons of galvanized and iron posts have been destroying miles of virgin forests, as well as tons of toxic rodent poisons placed between fences to eradicate rodents as well as pigs that eat them statewide, which is more damaging to watershed, negating conservation reasoning that pigs ruin the watershed. On this island alone Native Hawaiians as well as the general public, hunters, gatherers and recreational hikers has been ‘fenced out’ of nearly three million acres of their lands through 'Science and Conservation,' a clear case of taxation without representation.”
      Department of Forestry & Wildlife’s Ka`u Forest Reserve Management Plan proposes fencing 12,000 acres of forest, eradicating animals and possibly reintroducing the Hawaiian crow, with the possibility of more fence enclosures in the future. The suit refers to the plaintiff’s criticism of the cultural assessment, the interruption of hunting and gathering access and says there is a failure to measure results of prior, similar efforts.
     Pele Defense Fund says that it seeks “to preserve the Ka`u Forest Reserve for Native Hawaiian traditional and spiritual practices, and for education of future generations,” claiming the Environmental Assessment completed for the Ka`u Forest Reserve Management Plan overlooks “the risk of environmental impacts.”
Walkovers would allow access
for hunters.
       The Ka`u Forest Reserve Plan for the 61,641 acres calls for the fenced-in area to protect native plants and birds from ungulates to be at the high elevations, where hunting is less frequent. It also calls for walkovers, like stairways going over the fences to help give hunters continued access to their hunting grounds. The Hawaian crow, the `alala, would be re-introduced. It is believed to be extinct in the wild, and a breeding program takes place at San Diego Zoo and at Keauhou Bird Sanctuary in Volcano.
`Alala may be re-intro-
duced to the reserve.

THE DEA HAS LEFT HILO, according to a story in this morning’s Hawai`i Tribune-Herald. “Federal cutbacks in the U.S. Department of Justice have caused the federal Drug Enforcement Administration to close its office and hangar that were located at Hilo International Airport,” reports writer Hunter Bishop. The story says the DEA hangar and office shut down Oct. 1 without notification to local police. The Tribune-Herald reports that “Hawai`i County Police Department Maj. Randy Apele in the vice section said he was aware that the DEA had been considering removing its air operations for some time, but he was unaware that the agency had left the island.” The aviation component of the DEA will be supported from Honolulu, the story says. See more at www.hawaiitribune-herald.com.

Graphs from County of Hawai`i draft Energy Sustainability Program
Five-Year Roadmap
HAWAI`I COUNTY IS SEEKING PUBLIC COMMENT on its draft Energy Sustainability Program Five-Year Roadmap. Comments are due Wednesday, Dec. 5. The roadmap provides recommendations to strengthen the county’s energy program and realize more than $3.9 million in taxpayer saving, while empowering county government to lead the transition to energy sustainability. The Roadmap is being developed by The Kohala Center under the direction of Hawai`i County Department of Research & Development. 
      The overall objectives of the roadmap are to describe the critical role of county government in the pursuit of the island’s sustainable energy future and to provide the county with a set of high-priority policies and programs in the areas of renewable electricity, energy efficiency, and transportation systems.
      It describes challenges, highlights opportunities and suggests highest priority actions the county can take to lead the island to energy sustainability.
      Guiding principles listed for the road to energy sustainability are:
  • eliminate the island’s reliance on imported fossil-based energy and replace it with sustainable and secure energy sources;
  • reduce the price paid for energy services on Hawai`i Island;
  • maintain the reliability and safe operation of the island’s energy infrastructure; and 
  •  encourage innovation, invest in healthy communities and respect the natural environment.
      The roadmap reports that the island is reliant on imported petroleum fuels for 95 percent of its energy needs. “Rising, volatile energy prices impose a burden on many sectors of the island’s economy, and the high cost of energy disproportionately impacts low-income households. This equity issue could become more acute over time. Overcoming this dependence will require aggressive and sustained efforts from many stakeholders throughout the island for many years,” the report states.
      The greatest challenge, according to the report, is transportation, “because this sector constitutes more than half of energy demand, and the market development of sustainable transportation solutions has been slow.”
      Regarding electricity, “Renewable electricity generation costs less than the current petroleum-based electricity generation on the island,” says the report. “These technologies are commercially available today and should be widely deployed alongside a modernized power grid. Regulatory policy may need to change to facilitate rapid deployment.”
      The report calls for the county to “promote appropriate energy development and use, develop innovative and proactive policy and lead by example in county operations.”
      The roadmap is available at hawaiienergyplan.com. Public comments are accepted at energy@hawaiienergyplan.com or 887-6411.

Hawai`i's Largest Game Birds. Illustration by H. Douglas Pratt.
See www.hdouglaspratt.com
LEHUA COURT OWNERS OF PROPERTY along Hwy 11 near the corner of Lehua Lane in Ocean View are hosting a community meeting on Thursday, Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. at Ocean View Community Center. Both owners, Bill Stockton and Steve Sahines, will both be on hand. Sahines said they will give an overview of their plans to put in a professional and retail plaza and are seeking input on the needs of the community.
      “We will be open for questions and want to hear ideas for business that would be appropriate for Lehua Court.” More than 30 people have contacted the owners over the last few years with ideas ranging from a quilt shop to a restaurant, pharmacy and a doctors’ office, he said. For more, call Stockton at 960-7251 or Sahines at 443-9982. Also contact lehuacourt@aol.com.

KA`U HUNTERS are invited to go up Saddle Road for shotgun bird hunting in Pohakuloa Training Areas One, Two, Three and Four tomorrow and Sunday. Hunting begins at 5 a.m. and concludes at 7:30 p.m. Check-in stations are at Kilohana between Mile Markers 43 and 44 and at Huluhulu, where Saddle Road intersects with Mauna Kea Access Road close to Mile Marker 28. Hunters must be licensed and follow bag limits. Other regulations include no smoking, alcoholic beverages, building of fires, all-terrain vehicles, dirt bikes or other recreational vehicles. 
      State Department of Land & Natural Resources biologists predict a lower than average season of bird hunting, with lingering drought impacts on many parts of the state.
      Kapapala Ranch Cooperative Game Management Area is open for game bird hunting Saturdays, Sundays and state holidays for the entire game bird season, which began Nov. 3 and ends Jan. 16.
The life of Chaz Moses will be honored by the
Mauka Legend Hunting Tournament Dec.8.
      Other Game Management Areas where bird hunting is allowed during the same hours on this island are Mauna Kea Forest Reserve, Pu`uwa`a`a, Pu`uanuahulu, Kaohe Lease Cooperative and Kipuka Ainahou. Kahua is closed because of drought conditions.
      For more, call Hunter’s Hotline at 969-3474.

DEADLINE IS TOMORROW to register for the Mauka Legend Hunting Tournament. Scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 8, the tournament is a memorial for Ceasare “Chaz” D.K. Moses, who passed away June 4 in a fishing accident at South Point. 
      The event takes place at Old Pahala Clubhouse. Weigh-ins will be held from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. in three categories: Biggest Boar, Biggest Sow, and Longest Tusk. Entry fee is $40 per team.
      For entry forms and sponsorships, contact organizer Ty Chun at 985-9056, 557-8594 or tikeytai@aol.com.

KA`U COFFEE MILL HAS OPENED DAILY for its first Christmas season with a new line of Christmas Roasts and Christmas packaging to encourage Ka`u residents to buy local for the holidays. The visitor center is offering mailing, shipping and gift wrapping from its location on Wood Valley Road above Pahala.
Christmas packaging by Ka`u Coffee Mill. Design by Tanya Ibarra.
The visitor center and store are open on Wood Valley Road
daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
      Amery Silva said that “Growing up here in Pahala, it is wonderful to be part of a new business that can provide the community with a place to buy Christmas gifts. You don’t always have to go to Kona or Hilo and can support Ka`u through buying local – especially our Ka`u Coffees that are grown right here.” The Christmas Roasts to be offered on site beginning next Tuesday are Natural Medium and Washed Medium. Vanilla Macadamia and Macadamia will be offered later in the week.
      In addition to award-winning coffee with Christmas packaging, Ka`u Coffee Mill visitor center store offers a wide variety of macadamia nuts. From its original Kathleen Kam murals and paintings on the walls of the visitor center are wildlife and farm-life artist prints, giclees and note cards. Also offered are Ka`u Coffee Mill logo shirts, long-sleeve hoodies, hats, purses, bags and Ka`u Coffee mugs and tumblers. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every day. Gifts are also available online at www.kaucoffeemill.com and through gift certificates that allow online buying. Call 928-0550.

VOLCANO VILLAGE ARTISTS HUI Art Studio Tour & Sale begins today and goes through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Meet artists in their studios and see pottery, raku masks, hand-blown art glass, wood and metal sculpture, hand-tooled metal, fiber art, photographs, paintings, drawings and block prints. A special drawing for pieces contributed by the artists will be held on the last day. Maps are available at local businesses and VolcanoVillageArtistsHui.com.

CHRISTMAS IN THE COUNTRY takes place today through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Volcano Art Center Gallery. Special holiday celebrations include art demonstrations and print and book signings by gallery artists, plus a selection of handcrafted decorations and gifts offered only during the holiday season. Park entrance fees apply. For more, visit volcanoartcenter.org or call 967-7565.