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.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2017

Anchaline Ponds are on the 16,000 acre property that includes Pohue Bay, which is listed on the county's
wish list for preservation through the Public Access, Open Space and Natural Resources Commission.
See story below. Photo by Peter Bosted
SEN. MAZIE HIRONO HAD A MESSAGE FOR PRES. DONALD TRUMP TODAY.  A member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, she released the following statement in response to Trump’s executive orders on immigration: “It doesn’t matter how high or long President Trump builds his wall. Immigrants are woven into the fabric of our society and contribute billions of dollars a year to our nation’s economy. Nothing President Trump says or does will change this fact. Instead of posturing for his base, President Trump should join with us to pass comprehensive immigration reform.”
Gabbard meets with Syrian religious leaders in Aleppo, led by Archbishop
Denys Antoine Chahda of the Syrian Catholic Church of Aleppo,
and joined by Archbishop Joseph Tabji of Maronite Church of
Aleppo, Rev. Ibrahim Nseir of the Arab Evangelical Presbyterian
Church of Aleppo, and others. Photo by Abraham Williams
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REP. TULSI GABBARD VISITED WITH SYRIAN PRESIDENT ASSAD during her week-long trip to Syria and Lebanon, her staff revealed today. They said Gabbard returned to Washington, DC after a visit to Damascus, Aleppo, and Beirut "to see and hear firsthand the impact of the war in Syria directly from the Syrian people. She heard stories of suffering, pain, courage and hope from people all across the country. She met with refugees, Syrian opposition leaders who led protests in 2011, widows and family members of Syrians fighting alongside groups like al-Qaeda, as well as those fighting on the side of the government. The Congresswoman also met with Lebanon’s newly-elected President Aoun and Prime Minister Hariri, U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon Elizabeth Richard, Syrian President Assad, Grand Mufti Hassoun, Archbishop Denys Antoine Chahda of Syrian Catholic Church of Aleppo, humanitarian workers, students, small business owners, and more."
    Gabbard released the following statement upon her return: “My visit to Syria has made it abundantly clear: Our counterproductive regime change war does not serve America’s interest, and it certainly isn’t in the interest of the Syrian people.
Gabbard met with members of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent and other
humanitarian workers at Jibreen shelter, housing some 1,400 famliies 
who fled mostly eastern Aleppo. Photo by Abraham Williams
    “As I visited with people from across the country, and heard heartbreaking stories of how this war has devastated their lives, I was asked, ‘Why is the United States and its allies helping al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups try to take over Syria? Syria did not attack the United States. Al-Qaeda did.’ I had no answer.
    “I return to Washington, DC with even greater resolve to end our illegal war to overthrow the Syrian government. I call upon Congress and the new Administration to answer the pleas of the Syrian people immediately and support the Stop Arming Terrorists Act. We must stop directly and indirectly supporting terrorists—directly by providing weapons, training and logistical support to rebel groups affiliated with al-Qaeda and ISIS; and indirectly through Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, and Turkey, who, in turn, support these terrorist groups. We must end our war to overthrow the Syrian government and focus our attention on defeating al-Qaeda and ISIS.
Gabbard said she met work with husband fighting on
opposite sides of the war who come together for
friendship, some with husbands missing.
Photo by Abraham Williams
     “From Iraq to Libya and now in Syria, the U.S. has waged wars of regime change, each resulting in unimaginable suffering, devastating loss of life, and the strengthening of groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS.
     “Originally, I had no intention of meeting with Assad, but when given the opportunity, I felt it was important to take it. I think we should be ready to meet with anyone if there’s a chance it can help bring about an end to this war, which is causing the Syrian people so much suffering.
     “The U.S. must stop supporting terrorists who are destroying Syria and her people. The U.S. and other countries fueling this war must stop immediately. We must allow the Syrian people to try to recover from this terrible war.”
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POHUE BAY, makai of Ocean View, is on the latest wish list of properties to be conserved by Hawai`i County. The list was drawn up by the Public Access, Open Space and Natural Resources Commission and is presented in a report to Mayor Harry Kim. 
Ocean View resident, Bob South, hiking the ancient Ala Kahakai 
Trail on Pohue Bay property up for acquisition by Hawai`i County.
Photo by Peter Bosted
        The Pohue Bay property’s northern boundary goes from mile marker 71.5 on Route 11 to mile marker 76, while its western boundary is Ranchos and then private land. The southern boundary is the coast and the western boundary is also private land. An ancient Hawaiian foot trail leads from Ranchos to Pohue Bay. By law, this route is open to the public. The owners control a gated four-wheel-drive road onto and through the property. The property is 16,456 acres and the largest property on PONC’s wish list.         
     According to PONC’s report, the property’s anticipated use would include monitoring, management and protection of the Hawksbill Turtle nesting habitat, the protection of natural, cultural and historic resources, maintaining the existing managed access, open space protection and subsistence fishing and shoreline gathering. The six points of significance of the property are listed in the report as:
     *Identified in General Plan (2005) as an important site for protections;
     *Designated as high priority from initial PONC list in 2005;
     *Endangered turtle nesting beaches;
     *Significant cultural and historic sites;
     *Anchialine ponds;
     *Buffer of pristine coastal resources from urban/resort development. 
     The report also stated that the property has good potential for attracting funding from non-profit conservation organizations and government funding and there is “high community support.”. The report also states that the landowner is willing to sell.
Sea Cliffs on the Pohue Bay property. Photo by Peter Bosted
    Islandwide, the 16,000-acre Pohue property is fifth on the list. The number one property is the eight-acre Amy Greenwell Ethnobotanical Gardens, owned by Bishop Museum. A year ago, the museum closed the gardens and has offered it for sale. The deed, however, specifies that the property must be sold to a non-profit organization. The Friends of Amy Greenwell Garden have nonprofit status and hope to steward the property if PONC is able to buy it with money from from the Two Percent Fund, so named because two percent of all revenue from the county’s annual property tax is set aside each year to acquire properties. 
     The second, third and fourth ranked properties on the PONC list are in North Kohala district.    
     Chairman of Public Access, Open Space and Natural Resources Commission, Barbara Bell, described how PONC solicits suggestions for its wish list and then evaluates and prioritizes the properties. She reported that in 2016, “The fine people of Hawai’i County submitted many wonderful properties and the commissioners prioritized them, with their unique perspectives. By looking at how these properties will enhance life for residents and visitors alike, the commissioners carefully reviewed all community submittals of parcels for County purchase. We are extremely gratified at how many people have participated in our meetings, the submittal process, the grant application process, and in the program as a whole.”
      Although recommendations are made by PONC, purchases are approved by the Hawai’i County Council.
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SETTING AN EXAMPLE AND RAISING THE BAR STATEWIDE FOR CHEAP, RENEWABLE ENERGY, even after sunset, is Kaua`i Island Utility Cooperative with its new solar-plus-storage plant for peak capacity.
David Bissell, President and CEO of
Kaua`i Island Utility 
      “Energy from the project will be priced at 11 cents per kWh and will provide 11 percent of Kauaʻi’s electric generation, increasing KIUC’s renewable sourced generation to well over 50 percent,” said KIUC’s President and Chief Executive Officer, David Bissell. “The project delivers power to the island’s electrical grid at significantly less than the current cost of oil-fired power and should help stabilize and even reduce electric rates to KIUC’s members. It is remarkable that we are able to obtain fixed pricing for dispatchable solar based renewable energy, backed by a significant battery system, at about half the cost of what a basic direct to grid solar project cost a few years ago.” Bissell estimates that the project will reduce KIUC’s fossil fuel usage by more than 3.7 million gallons yearly.
     KIUC and AES Distributed Energy, Inc. (AES DE) plan to construct an innovative renewable peaker plant on Kauaʻi utilizing a hybrid solar and battery storage system. In a statement, KIUC and AES DE, have announced the execution of a power purchase agreement (PPA) for an innovative plant that will provide solar energy together with the benefits of battery-based energy storage for optimal balancing of generation with peak demand. The project consists of 28 megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic and a 20 MW five-hour duration energy storage system.  
    The system will be located on former sugar land between Lāwaʻi and Kōloa on Kauaʻi’s south shore. It will be the largest solar-plus-utility-scale-battery system in the state of Hawaiʻi and one of the biggest battery systems in the world.
     “We are honored that KIUC has selected AES to help meet their peak demand with a flexible and reliable renewable energy solution,” said Woody Rubin, President of AES Distributed Energy. “We are excited to be able to leverage AES’ industry-leading energy storage platform, and 20 plus-year history in Hawaiʻi in order to help KIUC modernize the grid and provide value to its customers.”
     AES DE will be the long-term owner and operator of the project. The company states that it is committed to providing innovative renewable energy solutions to its utility, corporate governmental customers. AES pioneers the use of energy storage on the electric grid, starting with the first grid-scale advanced energy storage project installed in 2008. AES now operates one of the largest fleets of battery-based energy storage in the world, the company reports.
     The project is pending state and local regulatory approvals. If approved, KIUC expects the project to come on line by late 2018.
      KIUC is a member-owned cooperative serving 33,000 customers on the island of Kauaʻi. Formed in 2002 and governed by a nine-member, elected board of directors, KIUC is one of 930 electric co-ops serving more than 36 million members in 47 states.
    The project is the second flexible solar facility for the small co-op. In 2015, KIUC signed a deal with SolarCity to pair a 13 MW solar array with a 52 MWh battery that will deliver power for $0.145/kWh. At the time, it was billed as the world's first fully-dispatchable solar PV project.
     Like the Big Island, Kaua’i experiences a glut of solar generation during sunny hours, and then must ramp up its fossil fuel generation to meet peak demand in the evening. The dispatchable renewables will mean that excess solar power will not be curtailed during the day, and solar power can still be used after the sun goes down. Energy professionals talk of “soft power” and “firm power”. Solar is considered “soft” as clouds or storms can control its generation. When power from “soft” sources fails, the utility company must switch to a “firm” source, such as oil-powered generators. By using solar power stored in a battery, KIUC can ween the grid from oil and possibly use solar power around the clock.
     Some energy professionals on the Big Island, including Richard Ha and Marco Mangelsdorf, have formed the Hawai’i Island Energy Cooperative and may try to acquire HELCO from its parent company, Hawai’i Electric Industries (HEI) or possibly start a rival company. For more on this possible take over, read the January Ka’u Calendar, page 3, or the Ka’u Calendar News Briefs of Saturday, Dec. 24.
    A utility-scale solar project propose for Ocean View, if approved, would supply “soft” solar power only, and would cost HELCO 23.8c per kWh, more than double what Kaua’i will pay for the proposed solar-plus-storage plant. The Chairman of the Public Utilities Commission, Randy Iwase, has reportedly told the Honolulu Star Advertiser that the Ocean View project is obsolete because the cost is too high. Work on the project has not begun, and the docket that is considering HELCO’s request for an overhead transmission line has been suspended.

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THE VICTIM  OF THE FATAL ACCIDENT AT HWY 11 NEAR Nāmakanipaio Campground last weekend has been identified as 65-year-old Paul Hernandez of New Jersey.  
     National Park Service rangers are seeking witnesses to the crash which happened around 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 21.
   Hernandez was traveling northbound on Highway 11 in a white Hyundai Elantra sedan. According to a witness, the Hyundai left its lane of travel as if doing a U-turn, and was struck by a blue Toyota Scion headed south, driven by a 33-year-old local male. Hernandez was fatally injured upon impact. The local male was transported by ambulance to Hilo Medical Center.
      Anyone with information regarding this accident is asked to call Park Dispatch at (808) 985-6170.

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Na`alehu School gets ready for islandwide track and field meets. Photo by Bob Martin
A TEAM FROM NA`ALEHU SCHOOL is getting ready for the Hawai`i County Parks & Recreation Age Group Track and Field meet on Feb. 11 at Konawaena High School. Head Coach is Linda Le, in her second year as teacher and coach at Na`alehu. Also helping is Bob Martin, in his fifth year as coach/assistant at Na`alehu. He was also head boys soccer coach for seven years at Ka'u High School and assisted with track and field there for six years.
     Entry deadline for anyone wishing to participate at either Konawaena High School or Waiakea High School for the Parks & Recs Feb. 11 events is this Friday, Jan. 27. 
     Another event will be the Exponent Track & Field Meets, also at both Konawaena and Waiakea simultaneously.  Entry deadline for the Exponent Meet is Friday, Feb. 10. See http://www.hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation/
     For more information please call Darrell Yamamoto, Recreation Division, (808) 961-8735, (cell) (808) 938-2012, or email: Darrell.Yamamoto@hawaiicounty.gov.

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HO`OMALU KA`U, The Ka`u Heritage Center, will hold a Giant Rummage Sale fundraiser on Saturday, Jan. 28 at Na`alehu Hongwanji from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For sale will be tools, household goods, car parts, artwork, jewelry, collectibles, clothes toys, books, utensils, glass, and more. Funds raised will be used for programs in Ka`u. Call 929-8526, or email hoomalukau@gmail.com to donate any items, or with questions about the fundraiser or about Ho`omalu Ka`u.

Ka`u News Briefs Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017

Ka`u or Mauna Loa Silversword receives the protection of fencing, flown into its habitat, high
 on the volcano. See story below. Photo from U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
THE STATE OF THE STATE ADDRESS by Gov. David Ige on Monday featured a personal appreciation of Hawai`i's past and a positive outlook toward the future. Said the governor in his opening remarks: "Last December, I had the privilege of participating in ceremonies marking the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor—the day when all that was personal and intimate here in the islands collided head-on with history. In 1941, my late father was about the same age as my children are today. He was young and just starting to plan out his life.
Gov. Davide Ige 
    "We know how those events dramatically changed those plans for him and his entire generation. Life has a way of doing that, no matter how well our plans are laid out. It made me think deeply about both where we’ve been and where we’re headed as a state.While we cannot predict the future, it’s clear to me that we are living in very challenging and exciting times. And we face these times standing on solid ground."
       The governor pointed to positive aspects of living in the Hawaiian Islands"
"This year, as in previous years, our people are among the healthiest in the nation. Our unemployment rate is the third lowest in the country. Our personal income growth is ranked 17th, and in 2016, we added 14,000 new jobs.
     "Our biggest industry, tourism, has had five successive record setting years and is moving toward yet another.  
     "In many ways, the state of the State of Hawai`i is sound and full of possibilities, said Ige. "Having said that, we all know there is still much work to be done:
     "There are families out there that continue to struggle despite the overall state of our economy.
       "I know there are those who are concerned about health care, child care and rent payments. That’s why we need to press on with the progress we’ve made over the last two years." Said Ige, the goals are for: "Transforming our schools; Reshaping our economy; Addressing homelessness and building more affordable homes; and Making government more efficient so that it can continue to work for the people."
      He described the goals as "inextricably linked to each other."
     "To transform our economy, we need to transform our schools, so our children can provide the brain power and fill the jobs required in a knowledge-based industry.
     "To keep them here, we need to ensure that our economy provides challenging and satisfying careers and homes they can afford.
     "And we need to protect our lands and natural resources, which underpin everything." said Ige.
"These are tough challenges," he said.
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TRAINING TO BECOME A VETERINARY ASSISTANT, according to County Council member Maile David,  is available to people in Ka`u through long-distance learning and through Hawai`i Community College-Palamanui, which is located near Kona Airport.
Vet Assistant training is available to Ka`u residents online
and at Hawai`i Community College.
Photo from University of Hawai`i
     The program mission is to increase the quality of veterinary care in Hawa`i by providing students with essential skills and knowledge that will enable the to obtain rewarding living-wage jobs in the animal care field. These jobs are found in veterinarian offices, animal shelters and animal research facilities and are also valuable for local farms and ranches. The program is two semesters and includes coursework in live sciences and animal sciences as well as hands-on experience.
     A meeting for those interested will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 7 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Room 6A Room A 101 at the Kona campus.
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The Ka`u or Mauna Loa Silversword was
added to the endangered species list in
1993. Photo from U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
HELPING TO SAVE THE ENDANGERED KA`U OR MAUNA LOA SILVERSWORD is one of the efforts of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park during the rest of January. The Park has issued a list of flight operations: On Wednesday, Jan. 25, between 8 a.m. and 2:30  p.m., pilots will shuttle personnel, fence material, and a water tank to the Kahuku Unit silversword exclosure and along the Kahuku-Kapapala boundary. 
     According to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, 
"Browsing feral and domesticated animals has been identified as the primary reason for the decline of the Ka‘u silversword. Mouflon sheep, cattle, goats and pigs are currently a major threat to the silversword both at Kahuku and the Forest Reserves."
     The recovery program for the Ka‘u silversword includes securing large-scale habitat and stabilizing the current populations and control of feral animals through large fenced areas, as well as continued reintroduction into the wild.
      Getting rid of fountain grass is another mission. On Thursday, Jan. 26, pilots will carry out invasive fountain grass surveys from the coastal areas to the southwest boundary below 3,000 feet elevation. 
     In addition, the USGS Volcano Observatory may conduct flight operations over Kilauea and Mauna Loa to assess volcanic activity and maintain instrumentation. "The park regrets any noise impact to residents and park visitors. Dates and times are subject to change based on aircraft availability and weather," says a statement from the National Park Service.
     "Management of the park requires the use of aircraft to monitor and research volcanic activity, conduct search-and-rescue missions and law enforcement operations, support management of natural and cultural resources, and to maintain backcountry facilities."
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

A $17,000 DEFIBULATOR has been donated to Ka`u Hospital through the initiative of former Ka`u resident Roy Teramoto and his wife Lorrain. Ka`u Hospital administrator Merilyn Harris said that with the new equipment on hand, "we will be training all our nursing staff on how to use its many great features."  Teremoto worked with the John H. Grace Foundation, of California, to facilitate the $17 K donation.
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

INTERNATIONAL  DANCER SHIZUNO NASU, of Volcano, will present new choreographed dances through February at East Hawai`i Cultural Center. Also on tap are workshops with a distinguished international troupe of dancers, musicians, and artists. "Shizuno Nasu’s performances throughout Europe and Asia are a unique fusion of multi-cultural communion shrouded in ancient Japanese mystical tradition," says a statement from East Hawai`i Cultural Center. 
    The February series will be performed within a set designed by internationally acclaimed artist Susumu Sakaguchi. A special exhibition of stage costumes by Usaburo Sato will open Friday,  Feb. 3 and remain on view in conference rom on the second floor of the East Hawai`i Cultural Center throughout the month on per  unique program and incorporate, in addition to Shinto chant and traditional Japanese instrumentation contributions by guest artists, including Jazz vocalist Rhiannon, didgeridoo player KNOB, Hawaiian dance, and Kumu Hula Kekuhi Kealii Kanakaole. Here are the dates of events and new dances:
    Friday, Feb. 3: White Prayer An interpretive dance from the ancient book Kojiki, and the story of Amenouzume… "whose passion through dance opens a door for light to shine brilliantly forth," says Nazu.
     Sunday, Feb. 5: Mystagogy from Ancient Japan Lecture by Masahito Iso and Taihei Takizawa.
     Friday, Feb. 10 and Saturday, Feb. 11: Red and Black Dance (Echo) A dialog between ancient
spiritual music and contemporary dance.
     Friday, Feb. 17 and Saturday,  Feb. 18: Blue...White Dance (Spiral) Ancient spiritual music with
Shizuno Nasu's dance The Spiral Vision alongside 13 dancers from Japan and Hawai`i.
    Sunday, Feb. 19: The Spiral Vision Dance workshop conducted by Shizuno Nasu,  Lilith and Emine.
    Friday, Feb. 24 and Saturday, Feb. 25: Red Dance (Exist) An improvisation on voice, sound and dance with Rhiannon and Kekuhi Keali.
    Performances are at 7 p.m. and cost is $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Call 961-5711.
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HO`OKANE UKULELE - Wednesday, Jan. 25, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m., Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Learn the basics of the beloved and iconic part of Hawaiian music culture. Free; park entrance fees apply. 

HO`OMALU KA`U, The Ka`u Heritage Center, will hold a Giant Rummage Sale fundraiser on Saturday,  Jan. 28 at Na`alehu Hongwanji from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For sale will be tools, household goods, car parts, artwork, jewelry, collectibles, clothes toys, books, utensils, glass, and more. Funds raised will be used for programs in Ka`u.  Call 929-8526, or email hoomalukau@gmail.com  to donate any items, or with questions about the fundraiser or about Ho`omalu Ka`u.