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.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Saturday, Jan. 14, 2017

Redoubt Volcano, shown here on April 4, 2009, is just one of the more than 50 historically active volcanoes monitored by the Alaska
Volcano Observatory, a sister USGS organization to Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Gray ash draping the flanks of the volcano
 creates a stark contrast to the surrounding snow-covered landscape and white steam rising from Redoubt’s summit crater. Top left,
 the USGS office of AVO, located in Grace Hallon the Alaska Pacific University campus in Anchorage, coordinates the observatory’s
 operations. Other AVO offices are at the University of Alaska and the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys
 in Fairbanks.  See Volcano Watch story below. USGS photos
RESHAPING THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION is a promise Gov. David Ige made on Saturday. He pledged to support dreams and aspirations of each student in remarks he made at the third annual Hawai‘i School Empowerment Conference at the Hawai‘i Convention Center. The conference was sponsored by the Education Institute of Hawai‘i, a non-profit organization committed to improving public education. The conference aims to increase awareness and deepen understanding to improve public education through school empowerment and innovation in learning.
Gov. David Ige promised on Saturday to reboot Hawai`i's p ublic education system.
Photo from Office of the Governor
     Ige entitled his talk A Clear Path to Achieving Excellence in Hawai`i's Public Schools. Here is the governor's speech:
     "Coding. Robotics. Digital media. International education exchanges. None of these programs were offered when I attended public schools in Pearl City, and it’s impossible to predict what fascinating opportunities await students in coming years.
     "What I can tell you is this: The success of today’s students in the future workplace and in our communities requires an absolute reboot of the rigid school system built over a century ago. Our school system is simply not relevant to today’s students.
     "That’s why I asked the members of the Board of Education, those I appointed and those who began serving prior to my taking office, to develop and implement a plan to transition from yesterday’s system to one that truly prepares students to think creatively and to be innovators. I asked board members to design a system that encourages teachers and principals to make meaningful decisions about curriculum and instruction, educational programs, and expenditure of schools funds.
     "The Board responded to my challenge. They worked with the community to develop a new strategic plan for the department. They courageously determined transformation requires a fresh mindset, starting at the top. And they initiated a search for a new superintendent. I fully support this decision. We need a change agent who is committed to exploring unconventional options in the quest to prepare our students for the future.
     "I want students, parents, teachers and other educators to be assured that my goal is to reshape the department so that it supports the dreams and aspirations of each student. I believe those closest to the students understand best how their students should be educated. That is the type of system we are working together to achieve.
     "The community supports this goal as evidenced by the tremendous participation in last summer’s Education Summit and dozens of follow-up meetings in communities throughout the state. I am proud of the work my volunteer team, parents, teachers, business leaders and community members have done to create a Blueprint for Hawaiʻi’s Education System. I asked them to think big, and they did. I can tell you, there is no shortage of innovative thinking in Hawaiʻi.
Ka`u High has competed in robotics, which Gov. David Ige says is a start to
building communities of the future. Photo from FIRST
     "My passion for education isn’t new, and the solutions I am promoting now aren’t a surprise to anyone who has been recently engaged in the dialogue on education. I campaigned on this issue and education remains my top priority.
     "We don’t know what the next technological wave will bring. But we do know that Hawaiʻi’s public education system must be set up so teachers are able to exercise their professional judgement and employ tools that enable student success.
     "Students who design robots in elementary school will build the communities of the future. Students who experience what it’s like to be innovators and entrepreneurs in high school will drive the state’s new economy. Students who travel with their class will collaborate with their peers around the world to solve global challenges. It is our responsibility to provide them with a robust learning experience so they can achieve rewarding and successful lives."
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BANKRUPTCIES IN HAWAI`I would have been at a 24-year low in 2016, with the exception of the year 2006, which saw a run on filing for bankruptcy before it became more difficult. A recent story in the Honolulu Star Advertiser quoted Honolulu bankruptcy attorney Blake Goodman saying that President-elect Donald Trump could play a role in the future of bankruptcy filings in Hawai`i. Goodman told the Advertiser that “Trump is either going to deliver as promised and make America great again with more solvency, more opportunities, more economic prowess, more jobs, lower taxes. To me it sounds like a Santa Claus list. But if he’s got the magic that everybody voted for, then we may see a continued decrease in bankruptcies for years to come. I think, though, the outcome will be as real as Santa Claus.”
     A trend that could lead to more bankruptcies, according to Goodman, would be increased interest rates; “which, if that continues will decrease the real estate values. It always translated to more bankruptcies when there is less equity in properties and people no longer have the option of taking cash out of their real estate to pay off debt,” he explained.
     The Advertiser reported statistics released early this month from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Hawai`i, showing there were 1,383 bankruptcy cases statewide in 2016, representing an 11.9 percent decline from 2015 and the lowest level in nine years.
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VOLCANO WATCH LOOKS AT ALASKA THIS WEEK in a continuing series of stories for Volcano Awareness Month. The scientists of Hawaiian Volcano Observatory write about the USGS observatories in Alaska and their relation to Hawai`i:
     "Hawai`i may be the most volcanically active state in the U.S., but in terms of sheer numbers of volcanoes, Alaska is the hands-down winner. Of the nation’s 169 active volcanoes, 90 are located in Alaska. Eruptions there are common, and some volcanoes are in a semi-constant state of low-level activity.
Augustine Volcano in the Cook Inlet during a 2015 eruption. It was the 1986 eruption
 of this volcano that led to creation of the Alaska Volcano Observatory, the sister
to Hawaiian Volcano Observaotry. Photo by Cyrus Read/ USGS
     "The 1986 eruption of Augustine volcano in Cook Inlet (near Anchorage) emphasized the need for volcano monitoring and research in Alaska. It also prompted the establishment of the Alaska Volcano Observatory, which was founded in 1988.
     "AVO is a partnership between three organizations: the U.S. Geological Survey, the Geophysical Institute of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys. These three groups contribute to observatory operations, although hazards notifications are issued by the USGS, which has federal responsibility for such declarations.
    "AVO did not have to wait long after its establishment for its first “test.” On December 14, 1989, Redoubt volcano, also in Cook Inlet, erupted. The next day, KLM flight 867, carrying 231 passengers from Amsterdam to Tokyo with a stop in Anchorage, flew through a Redoubt ash plume, causing all four engines to fail. The aircraft dropped more than 3 km (2 mi) in altitude within five minutes before the flight crew managed to restart the engines and land the plane safely in Anchorage. All four engines on the aircraft had to be replaced, with damages totaling about $80 million. The Redoubt eruption continued through early June 1990.
     "The KLM flight 867 incident reemphasized that hazards from even remote volcanoes can impact an increasing number of vulnerable jet aircraft—a lesson that had previously been demonstrated by similar ash-aircraft encounters around the world. These encounters represent a significant difference in emphasis between AVO and the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. In Hawai`i, we focus primarily on ground-based volcanic hazards such as lava flows, whereas Alaska has both ground and airborne concerns. AVO’s area of responsibility is also much broader than that of HVO, extending from southeast Alaska to Anchorage, along the Alaska Peninsula, and then out the chain of Aleutian Islands towards Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula—a distance of over 3,000 km (2,000 mi)!
     "Nevertheless, AVO uses volcano monitoring methods similar to those employed by HVO, including webcams, seismic and GPS stations, and geological mapping. Ground-based monitoring and research field work are considerable challenges owing to Alaska’s harsh environment and the remoteness of so many volcanoes, so satellite data are used extensively.
    "Aircraft pilot reports are also important sources of information about Alaskan volcanoes. In fact, it was pilot reports, confirmed by satellite data, that documented the unheralded December 20, 2016, eruption of Bogoslof—a tiny island with no ground-based volcano monitoring—which sent an ash plume to an altitude of over 10 km (6 mi).
The volcano on Uniyak in the Aleutian Islands. USGS photo
     "Since its founding, AVO has made tremendous strides in mapping the largely unknown volcanoes of Alaska to better understand their eruptive histories and future eruptive potential. Even some of the remote volcanoes of the western Aleutian Islands have been instrumented to track unrest and detect eruptions that might be hazardous to aircraft.
     "AVO has also developed state-of-the-art tools for viewing the abundance of available satellite observations that can detect ash plumes and thermal anomalies. Some of these tools have been exported to Hawaii, where HVO scientists use them to enhance their monitoring of Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes.
    "Scientists at AVO are researching Alaskan volcanoes to contribute to a better understanding of how volcanoes work in general. Of particular importance are AVO’s investigations into the dynamics of explosive eruptions and their deposits, relations between seismic energy and ash plumes, and hydrologic hazards due to eruptions at snow- and ice-covered volcanoes.
    "Next week we’ll visit the most populous state in the U.S., which is also home to 19 active volcanoes—California."
     HVO scientists encourage everyone to attend upcoming Volcano Awareness Month programs on the Island of Hawai‘i. The complete schedule, including descriptions of the talks, is posted on HVO’s website at hvo.wr.usgs.gov.
     Volcano Activity Updates: Kīlauea continues to erupt at its summit and East Rift Zone. This past week, the summit lava lake level varied between about 16.5 and 33.5 m (54–110 ft) below the vent rim. The 61g flow was still active, with lava entering the ocean near Kamokuna and surface breakouts near Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō. The 61g flow does not pose an immediate threat to nearby communities.
Lava continues to enter the ocean near Kamouna, creating a
plume of hot water. USGS image.
     Mauna Loa is not erupting. During the past week, small-magnitude earthquakes continued, primarily beneath the upper Southwest Rift Zone and summit caldera at depths less than 5 km (3 miles). GPS measurements continue to show deformation related to inflation of a magma reservoir beneath the summit and upper Southwest Rift Zone, although rates appear to have slowed over the past month.
    Two earthquakes were reported felt in Hawai`i this past week. On Jan. 9, at 2:20 p.m., HST, a magnitude-3.1 earthquake occurred 62 km (38.5 mi) southwest of Lāna‘i City, Lāna‘i, at a depth of 10 km (6.2 mi). On January 7, at 10:24 a.m., HST, a magnitude-3.5 earthquake occurred 16.0 km (9.9 mi) north of Pāhala, Hawaiʻi, at a depth of 9.4 km (5.8 mi).
     Visit HVO's website http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov for past Volcano Watch articles, Kīlauea daily eruption updates, Mauna Loa weekly updates, volcano photos, recent earthquakes info, and more; call for summary updates at 808-967-8862 (Kīlauea) or 808-967-8866 (Mauna Loa); email questions to askHVO@usgs.gov.
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KA`U HIGH WON IN SOCCER again on Saturday, with a score of 2-1 on the home field against Kohala, reports Athletic Director Kalei Namohana. Kobe Moses and Brennan Nishimura scorecd the goals for the Trojans. Ka`u's goal keeper for the game was Mark Galacio.

PEOPLE & LAND OF KAHUKU, Sunday, Jan. 15 from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.. Free,  guided, 2.5 mile, moderately difficult hike over rugged terrain to illustrate the human history of the area, within the Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DAY will be celebrated in Kona and Hilo. In Kona, the 36th Anniversary Birthday Commemoration of the civil rights leader will be Sunday, Jan. 15 from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Old Kona Airport Beach Park, Makaeo Pavillion. Art, songs, music by local schools and the community will be featured. In Hilo, it will take place Monday, Jan. 16 at the recently rernovated Mo`oheau Bandstand from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. with performers, speakers and artists commemorating MLK.