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, January 29, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Saturday, Jan. 28, 2017

The season for counting humpback whales is underway, with an official count by volunteers and Hawaiian Islands
Humpack Whale National Marine Sanctuary staff on Saturday at Punalu`u and Ka Lae, as well as other locations
around the state. Photo from NOAA
MORE THAN 527 PEOPLE GATHERED ON THE SHORES OF HAWAI`I TO COUNT WHALES on Saturday, as the first in a series of annual whale counts began with volunteers and the staff of the Hawaiian islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. Punalu`u and Ka Lae were the two sites in Ka`u where people looked for humpback whales for a tally and to record their behaviors. While no humpbacks were seen at Kawena Point at the bottom of Chain of Craters Road, nor at Punalu`u,  as many as five were seen at Ka Lae during each 15 minute period between 8 a.m. and 12:45 p.m.  The next whale count will be the last Saturday in February, followed by the last Saturday in March.
A breaching humpback. Photo by Doug Perrine/NOAA
   Statewide, a total of 70 whale sightings were seen during the 10 a.m. - 10:15 a.m. time period, the most of any time period throughout the day’s count. Whale viewing conditions were nearly perfect statewide in the morning. Many observers saw green sea turtles, spinner dolphins and sea birds. A couple of observers saw flying fish and a Hawaiian Monk Seal.
     Preliminary data detailing whale sightings by site location are available at:
http://www.sanctuaryoceancount.org/resources/. Additional information is available on the sanctuary’s website at http://hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov.
     The sanctuary, which is administered by a partnership of NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and the State of Hawai‘i through the Department of Land and Natural Resources, protects humpback whales and their habitat in Hawaiian waters where they migrate each winter to mate, calve and nurse their young.
      NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage coastal and marine resources. For more, see  Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and NOAA's other social media channels.
Humpbacks give birth each winter in Hawaiian waters. From the 
shore volunteers count adults and calves.
Photo from NOAA
     Read more about the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary at http://hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov; NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries at http://sanctuaries.noaa.gov, and the state Department of Land and Natural Resources at

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"TONIGHT'S STAY WAS A VICTORY but we'll keep fighting #Resist #MuslimBan," tweeted, Ka`u's U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono on Saturday. Hirono was referring to a federal judge putting a stay Saturday night on Pres. Donald Trump's attempt to turn away legal foreign visitors coming to the U.S. from a list of Muslim-majority countries.
      The American Civil Liberties Union sent attorneys to court after foreign visitors were detained at airports around the country this weekend, following Trump's Executive Order, temporarily banning people from Syria, Iran, Sudan, Lebanon, Iraq, Somalia and Yemen.      
     The stay, however, affects only those few people who were en route to the U.S. when the travel ban was implemented. Various attorneys said they would go to court again on Monday to argue against the entire travel ban that is based on religion and country origin. 
Sen. Mazie Hirono's twitter feed features advice to those being
denied entry into the U.S.
     Trump said that extreme vetting measures will be developed before deciding who can come into the U.S. from the banned countries. He also said that priority should be given to "persecuted Christians." Hirono also tweeted about her own history as a immigrant: "Came to the U.S. in steerage. Now a U.S. Senator fighting for more families to have the opportunities I did."
     Protests in airports and other places around the U.S. and abroad broke out in opposition to Trump's immigration policies. A popular image shows the Statue of Liberty in tears.
   Hirono's twitter feed featured recommendations on rights of those denied entry into the U.S.

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OPPOSING PRES. DONALD TRUMP'S EXECUTIVE ORDERS to revive the Dakota Access Pipeline and Keystone XL Pipeline, Ka`u's Congresswoman, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, issued a statement Saturday, calling Trump's action "an attack on the rights of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and their neighboring communities, as well as all who live near the proposed path of the Keystone XL Pipeline.
     "Protecting our water and our environment are issues that should concern us all. Whether it's the threat to essential water sources by Keystone XL or Dakota Access Pipelines, the lead-contaminated water in Flint, Michigan, or the potential threat posed to a major Hawaiʻi aquifer by the Red Hill fuel tanks, each underscores the vital importance of protecting our water resources.
     "The Keystone Pipeline poses a grave threat to our environment. It will transport 830,000 barrels of dirty tar sands oil every day, which emits four times the amount of carbon dioxide during processing versus regular oil and permanently pollutes the water used for extraction, resulting in dangerous, toxic sludge. Worse, the project will not create long-term jobs in the U.S., will not increase U.S. energy independence, nor will it reduce U.S. gas prices. The oil being transported by Keystone is not for American use - it will be exported to other countries. The American people will carry the risk, while multinational corporations benefit.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who visited Standing Rock in November, responded to
 Pres. Donald Trump's Executive Order to revive the Dakota Access Pipeline.
Photo from Tulsi Gabbard
     "The Dakota Access Pipeline construction beneath Lake Oahe is a grave threat to our precious water supplies. In November, I traveled to Standing Rock, joining thousands of veterans from all across the country, to stand peacefully in solidarity as water protectors with our Native American brothers and sisters.
     "I joined them because, while growing up in Hawai`i, I learned from a young age the importance of taking care of our home, our planet. We are all connected by a common thread, and an injustice to one is an injustice to all.
     "Just one spill from either of these pipelines could release tens of thousands of barrels of crude oil, contaminating water resources for millions of people. It could cause irreparable damage to our environment and harm the lives of Americans for generations. Water is life. We cannot survive without it.
     "We cannot remain silent while the precious water supply of millions of people is threatened by profiteering oil companies. We must speak up. Our voices must be heard!"

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VISITOR DESTINATIONS ARE BECOMING SO BUSY RECENTLY that at least one of the famous lookouts in Hawai`i is limiting the number of people who can visit. Beginning on Feb. 1, visitors wanting to view the famous sunrise from the summit of Haleakala on Maui will need to make sunrise viewing reservations ahead of time at recreation.gov. According to a press release from Haleakalā National Park, the online reservation system is being implemented to ensure visitor and employee safety, protect natural and cultural resources, and provide a quality visitor experience at the summit during sunrise hours (3am to 7am). The reservation system is in effect now. The cost is $1.50 per car. 
     The one-day sunrise reservation will not be sold at the park but is available online, up to 60 days ahead of the date of the sunrise visit. The reservation is only available via recreation.gov and cannot be transferred. To enter the Haleakalā National Park’s Summit District between 3am and 7am, the reservation holder must be present and show both the one-day sunrise reservation receipt (for that day) and a photo ID.
Sunrise is so popular that watching it will require reservations at Haleakala National Park on Maui. Photo from USGS
    Due to limited parking, visitors without a sunrise viewing reservation will have to wait until after 7a.m. to enter the park. There is no refund or exchange of the reservation due to inclement weather or change of plans. There is no change to the National Park Service’s current policy regarding Kanaka Maoli who wish to conduct traditional practices in the park. There is no change to the park’s current Commercial Use Authorization policy regarding sunrise tours.
     The permit system is considered temporary and is being implemented because its is not unusual to have over 300 vehicles on the summit, but parking space for only 150 vehicles in four parking lots.
     According to the press release, when vehicles outnumber parking spaces, visitors park on road shoulders or in the upbound lane of Crater Road. The cars block emergency vehicle access and damage park infrastructure, vegetation, and critical habitat for endangered species.  Crowds at sunrise viewpoints often number over 1,000, with accidents resulting from visitors moving off trail and climbing cliff sides in the dark.
     In summer 2016 the park gathered public input on options regarding sunrise visitor management. This interim reservation system was deemed the best short-term option. In 2017, the park will develop a long-term Sunrise Summit Visitor Management Plan (Environmental Assessment), and will again welcome public comments. For more information about the new sunrise reservation system, go to the park’s website at www.nps.gov or call 572-4400.
     According to the NPS News Release, Recreation.gov is easy to use and will ensure that reservation holders can access the summit and safely view the sunrise.
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BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU HAWAI`I HAS ISSUED A SCAM WARNING, involving emails. Gmail accounts are the target of a new, and highly effective scam, perpetrated by computer hackers intent on stealing information from computers belonging to their victims. The scam is circulating online disguised as an email from an existing contact, such as a friend or colleague, according to the warning statement from the Hawai’i Better Business Bureau.
     The scam works as follows. The dangerous email will appear in your inbox as an email from an existing contact. In the email users will find what seems to be a regular attachment, however, when clicked on a preview window will not open, but rather a new window, which appears to be a Google login page, will appear. Most users will assume that the computer failed to load the attachment, try to log in again, by typing the user’s password. That password is now picked up and recorded by the scammers. The scammers will now have full access to the account and begin the process over again sending out emails from the compromised account to the account’s existing contacts.
     The BBB says that the login in screen is difficult to identify as being fraudulent. Everything from the logo to the entry fields will appear normal. The only way to spot the fake login is in the browser address bar. The URL will be preceded by “data:text/html.”
     The scammers will not only be able to send out the fraudulent emails to the compromised account’s contacts they will also have access to everything in and attached to the Gmail account.
     Although hard to detect, Gmail users can protect themselves by checking the address bar before entering any personal information. For an extra layer of protection, users can add two-step authentication to their accounts.
     There is no way to know for sure if an account has been compromised, according to the BBB, but Gmail users can check their login activity to see if anyone else has been logging into the account. If the account has been logged on to from unknown sources, the account has been hacked, and the password needs to be changed immediately. Users should also report any accounts they believe may have been compromised if they receive a suspicious email, the BBB recommends.
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KA`U TROJANS'  BOYS BASKETBALL TEAM took on Kamehameha School on Saturday at the new home gym. In JV competition, Ka`u scored 25, with Kyson Toriano making 11 points, Micah Koi 7, Nainoa Ke 6. However, Kamehameha scored 51 to take the win.
     In varsity competition Ka`u scored 36, with Andre Carvalho racking up 10, Joven Padrigo 8, Pete Dacalio 8 and Janslae Badua 5. Kamehameha won the game with 52 points.

AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR TRAINING will be held at Ocea view Community Center on Feb. 4 at 10:30 a.m. the Hilo Medical Center Foundation donated the defibrillator
     Automated External Defibrillator Training at OVCC - Feb. 4 at 10:30 a.m.