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, February 03, 2017

Ka`u News Briefs Friday, Feb. 3, 2017

The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (middle right), perched on the rim of Kīlauea Volcano's summit caldera,
overlooks Halemaʻumaʻu Crater, where an active lava lake occupies a vent that opened in 2008 and continues
to emit a volcanic gas plume today. HVO is located next to the Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park museum named
for the observatory's founder, Thomas A. Jaggar. See story below. USGS photos
PROTECTING THE NATION FROM FOREIGN TERRORIST ENTRY INTO THE UNITED STATES, the recent Pres. Donald Trump Executive Order, is the target of a lawsuit filed today by Hawai`i's Attorney General Doug Chin. The Hawai`i AG is one of a growing number of state Attorney Generals filing suit to protect refugees and other legal travelers and foreign residents who come to the U.S. for sanctuary, business, family, work, school and recreation.
Georgetown University law professor Neal Kumar Katyal
will help the state of Hawai`i with its lawsuit against
President Donald Trump.
      A federal judge, responding to the Washington state Attorney General's similar suit, today issued a restraining order halting the Trump order nationwide, forcing federal immigration officials to let the targeted people into the country, provided they have legal documents to come here.
      The Hawai`i suit notes that Hawai`i is the nation's most ethnically diverse state, home to more than 250,000 foreign-born residents, with more than 100,000 of them being non-citizens. The Hawai`i V. Trump suit says that thousands of people living in Hawai`i obtain lawful permanent resident status each year, including individuals from the seven designated countries from which the Trump order is denying access: Iraq, Iran, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, and Yemen. It says that Hawai`i is home to 12,000 foreign students, including individuals from the designated countries, among them 27 graduate students at University of Hawai`i. It states that in 2016, foreign students contributed $400 million to Hawai`i's economy in tuition, fees, living expenses and other activities, supporting 7,590 jobs here. There are also numerous faculty members in Hawai`i's educational system who come from the targeted countries.
    The Hawai`i AG filed Hawai`i V. Trump - the State of Hawai`i against President Donald Trump - in Hawai`i federal court opposing Trump's Executive Order that restricts immigration from the seven Muslim-majority countries. Trump’s order also
Hawai`i Attorney General Doug Chin
files lawsuit against Donald Trump.
suspends all refugee admission for 120 days and bars all Syrian refugees indefinitely. It grants entry preferences to minority religions. Chin said the order is the beginning of the fulfillment of President Trump’s campaign pledge to implement a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”
    The Hawai`i AG said,  “What makes our country special and a beacon across the world is its inclusive democracy and the rule of law. Everyone in the United States, including the President, must follow the law and follow the Constitution.”
     Hawai`i today asked for a hearing on its motion for a temporary restraining order in no more than 14 days. Chin noted that “Hawai`i is an island state. This illegal order affects our state in a unique way. Under this order, an Iraqi permanent resident on the mainland U.S. cannot leave the country without the risk of never being allowed to return, but he still can travel throughout the continental United States. That same person here cannot so much as visit another island within our state for fear of being detained by federal agents at the airport. In the past, the people of this state experienced discrimination by the federal government based on national origin. We must speak up and not let this happen again.”
     The complaint alleges several causes of action: 
     "The Executive Order is unconstitutional because it favors one religion over another in violation of the establishment clause of the First Amendment;
     "The Executive Order is unconstitutional because it denies equal protection of the law on the basis of national origin;
     "The Executive Order is unconstitutional because it curtails the right to travel without any legal justification;
     "The Executive Order is unconstitutional because it deprives individuals of their liberty interests without due process of law; and
     "The Executive Order is illegal because it violates the Immigration and Nationality Act and the Administrative Procedures Act." 
     Assisting the state of Hawai`i is Neal Kumar Katyal, a law professor at Georgetown University and former Acting Solicitor General of the United States. Like the Washington state AG, the Hawai`i AG is asking the court to block Trump's order across the entire country. 
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Thomas Jaggar (second from left) prepares to measure the temperature of 
Halema`uma`u lava lake in 1917. Pictured, left to right, Norton Twigg-Smith, 
Jaggar, Lorrin Thurston, Joe Monez, and Alex Lancaster. Photo from USGS
VOLCANO AWARENESS MONTH IN JANUARY celebrated the partnerships between Hawai`i Volcano Observatory and the other four observatories operated by the U.S. Geological Service. The series of Volcano Watch stories from Hawai`i Volcano Observatory reminded everyone that Kīlauea is home to America's first volcano observatory. Its establishment was followed by Cascades (CVO), Alaska (AVO), California (CalVO), and Yellowstone (YVO).
      HVO scientists write that "The story of HVO goes back to 1909, when a geologist named Thomas A. Jaggar visited Kīlauea for the first time. Noting the volcano's frequent and relatively benign eruptions, fairly easy access, and frequent earthquakes, Jaggar concluded that Kīlauea was the ideal site to study volcanic and seismic activity. He soon began raising funds to build a volcano observatory at the summit of Kīlauea on the Island of Hawaiʻi.    
     "Jaggar, a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), was unable to move to Hawai'i right away. But by late 1910, he had secured MIT funds to purchase specialized equipment and shipped it to Hawaiʻi in anticipation of his work on Kīlauea. He also arranged for an American volcanologist, Frank Perret, to travel to the island and begin observing and recording Kīlauea's volcanic activity. Perret was in Hawai'i from July to October 1911.
Volcano Observatory started up with one geologist, Thomas Jaggar, but now can
host a team of as many as 26 with various specialtiies, from geophysics
to seismology, volcanic gases and electronics. USGS photo
   "Several prominent Hawai`i businessmen had pledged money in 1909 to build an observatory at Kīlauea, but Jaggar's delay in getting it started had cooled their enthusiasm. Perret, however, demonstrated the value of scientific observation and documentation at Kīlauea, and these businessmen, who had formed the Hawaiian Volcano Research Association (HVRA), again pledged funding to cover the daily operating expenses not covered by MIT funds. Continued HVRA support kept HVO going for many years.
     "Jaggar finally arrived at Kīlauea and took over the continuous study of Hawai'i Island's active volcanoes in January 1912. Although Perret began monitoring Kīlauea the year before, 1912 is generally noted as the year HVO was founded and the beginning of the first century of volcano watching in Hawai'i.
      "Jaggar was the Director of HVO until he retired in 1940. Since then, 19 other scientists have served as HVO's Director or "Scientist-in-Charge."
      "From 1912 to 1947, HVO was located near the present-day Volcano House Hotel in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. In 1948, HVO was moved into a building that is now the National Park's Thomas A. Jaggar Museum, where it remained for almost 40 years.
      "In 1986, HVO moved to its current location—a building constructed next to Jaggar Museum—perched on the rim of Kīlauea's summit caldera.
      "In the years since HVO was funded by the Hawaiian Volcano Research Association (1912–1919), other agencies have funded the observatory. These agencies include the U.S. Weather Bureau (1919–1924), the U.S. Geological Survey (1924–1935), and the National Park Service (1935–1947). In 1947, the U.S. Geological Survey became the permanent administrator of HVO.
      "Today, HVO is part of the USGS Volcano Hazards Program. Its mission is to monitor active and potentially active Hawaiian volcanoes and associated seismicity, assess volcanic and earthquake hazards, respond to volcanic crises, and conduct research on Hawaiian eruptions and earthquakes. HVO also provides volcanic and seismic hazards information to the emergency managers and affected populace who must make decisions about public safety. HVO differs from other USGS volcano observatories in that it is also the authoritative source of earthquake information in Hawaii.
      "HVO's staff has grown from one geologist in 1912 (Jaggar) to a team of as many as 26 people in recent years, including specialists in geology, geophysics, seismology, volcanic gases, computer technology, electronics, library/photo archives, administration, and public information. Hundreds of volunteers and academic collaborators from around the world have also provided valuable assistance to HVO through the years.
     "HVO's work today is as exciting and relevant as it was in the days of Thomas Jaggar, who felt a profound responsibility to use scientific inquiry to serve communities. We are proud to carry on his legacy—serving the people of Hawai'i and beyond—into HVO's second century."
    For more, see The Story of the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory—A Remarkable First 100 Years of Tracking Eruptions and Earthquakes. This USGS booklet, published to commemorate HVO's centennial in 2012, is available online at http://pubs.usgs.gov/gip/135/. For more on HVO, see http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov

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Ethnobotany of Hawaiian feather artifacts involves native Hawaiian, endangered birds
during an After Dark in the Park talk on Tuesday. Photo form NPS
HAM RADIO OPERATORS Potluck Picnic, Sunday, Feb. 5, Manuka Park. All American Radio Emergency Service members, anyone interested in learning how to operate a ham radio and families are invited to attend. Dennis Smith, 989-3028

PU`U O LOKUANA, Sunday, Feb. 5, 9:30 – 10:30 a.m., Kahuku unit of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Participants learn about formation and various uses of this grassy cinder cone and enjoy a breathtaking view of lower Ka‘ū on this free, moderately difficult 0.4-mile hike to the top.

ETHNOBIOLOGY OF HAWAIIAN FEATHER ARTIFACTS is the subject of After Dark in the Park on Tuesday, Feb. 7 at 7 p.m. "Feather artifacts made by a variety of Pacific Island cultures are among the most beautiful of human creations, and it is often said that feather objects made by the Hawaiian people are the most stunning in existence," says a release from Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.
     Sheila Conant, Professor Emerita of the Department of Biology at the University of Hawai'i-Mānoa, will discuss various types of feather artifacts, the animals and plants from which they were made and how different types of artifacts were constructed. She will also consider the possible impact of feather collection on native birds. Free at Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium.
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Ka`u News Briefs Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017

 Sunblocks, sunscreens contribute to the bleaching and death of corals. Photo from Duke University

CHEMICAL BLOCKERS FOUND IN SUNSCREENS that are toxic to corals in the ocean are addressed by bills introduced by Hawai‘i state senators this legislative session. Ka‘ū Sens. Josh Green and Russell Ruderman are on record as introducing three of the bills.
     In an effort to protect Hawai‘i’s coral reefs, lawmakers want to ban either the sale of sunscreens or the use of sunscreens that contain the chemical oxybenzone. Studies show it increases the rate of coral bleaching.
     The Director of Communications for the Hawai‘i State Senate, Jill Kuramoto, explained: “There are several different bills introduced this session by the senators which address the issue in a variety of different ways. The hope is that there will be a robust discussion on this issue and will lead to an agreed upon measure that protects Hawai‘i’s waters and coral reefs, which is a priority for the state Senate.”
     Four of the bills have similar preambles to explain how banning certain sunblocks will reduce coral bleaching.
     SB 260: “The legislature finds that the health of Hawai‘i’s marine ecosystem is a matter of serious and ongoing concern in the state. In particular, coral in Hawai‘i’s waters have shown increasingly significant signs of damage, including extensive bleaching. The Legislature further finds that many factors, such as water temperature, contribute to this damage, but that the damage is exacerbated by the presence of chemicals that are toxic to coral. The Legislature additionally finds that recent research has demonstrated that oxybenzone and octinoxate are toxic to coral organisms, cause deformation in the larval form of coral, and contribute to coral bleaching. The legislature also finds that oxybenzone and octinoxate are chemical blockers that protect skin from ultraviolet radiation. As a result, oxybenzone and octinoxate are commonly found in sunscreens and other similar personal care products. Oxybenzone and octinoxate can be released into the ocean when a swimmer who has applied sunscreen enters the water, or through the waste mist plume of spray-on sunscreen. The Legislature further finds that elevated levels of oxybenzone and octinoxate have been detected at popular swimming beaches throughout the state, including Waimea Bay and Waikiki beach on O‘ahu, and Honolua bay on Maui. Accordingly, the purpose of this Act is to prohibit the sale in the State of Hawai‘i personal care products containing oxybenzone and octinoxate.”
      SB 260, SB 692 and SB 696 are both supported by Ruderman and Green. If enacted, SB 260 would prohibit the sale of sunblocks containing both offending chemicals. It is introduced by a total of 18 of the 25 members of the Senate. SB 692 prohibits the sale of sunscreens, unless they carry a warning label and is supported by ten senators.
The "fire hose" of red lava was no longer visible on Thursday when geologists hiked
to the ocean entrance of the flow, just before the collapse. USGS Photo
      SB 1150, which is supported by Kalani English and 12 other senators, would prohibit the use of sunscreens containing oxybenzone at beaches. Also banning the use are SB 210 (introduced by 11 senators, including Ruderman) and SB 692 (supported by ten senators). The latter would prohibit the use of harmful sunblocks while in a marine life conservation district. There is no explanation as to how these last two bills would be enforced, were they to become law, or what the cost of patrolling beaches and inspecting sunscreens would be.
To check if a sunscreen has oxybenzone, check the label on the back of the bottle.
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THE SEA CLIFF AT KAMOKUNA where lava enters the ocean was seen as very unstable Thursday morning when Hawaiian Volcano Observatory issued an Activity Notice, with an Alert Level of Watch and Aviation Color Code Orange:
     "Kīlauea Volcano's episode 61g lava flow is still active and entering the ocean at Kamokuna on the volcano's south coast. Recent observations of the ocean entry indicate growing instability of the adjacent sea cliff. Potential collapse of the cliff poses an extreme danger to anyone in the closed area on land, as well as to boats near the ocean entry.
The top photo was snapped just before the collapse
occurred.The bottom image shows the remaining
 sea cliff after the collapse. Yellow arrows point to
 the same rocks in both photos for comparison.
 Photos from USGS

       "On January 25, HVO geologists noted an extensive crack running parallel to the sea cliff about 5 - 10 m (16 - 33 ft) behind the stream of lava at the Kamokuna ocean entry. Ground inspection of this crack by HVO geologists on January 28 showed 30 cm (about 1 foot) of separation across the crack. Four days later, on February 1, this crack had widened to about 70 cm (2.5 feet). The seaward block bounded by this crack was visibly moving up to 1 cm (about 1/2 inch), possibly in response to explosions below the ocean entry as hot lava mixed with cool ocean water. In addition, ground shaking could be felt up to several hundred meters (yards) away. "These observations show that this portion of the sea cliff is highly unstable and could collapse into the ocean with no warning.
     "Sudden collapse into the ocean of a slab of sea cliff about 28 m (90 ft) high and about 150 m (490 ft) or more in length would create a significant wave that would travel rapidly out to sea. It would also could shower the immediate area with blocks of hot rock and fragments of molten lava. It could also prompt more powerful explosions as the 61g lava tube is further exposed."
     When HVO geologists hiked to the Kamokuna ocean entry on Thursday to assess the status of the sea cliff, they found that the "firehose" flow was no longer visible. However, spatter (bits of molten lava) and black sand flying through the steam plume indicated that lava was still flowing into the ocean and interacting explosively with seawater. Just below the left side of the steam cloud, a small shelf of the Kamokuna lava delta that survived the New Year's Eve collapse could be seen.
     Within minutes of HVO geologists reaching the ocean entry site, the sea cliff seaward of a hot crack collapsed with no warning, but the geologists were far enough away to be safe.
     HVO continues to monitor the situation and will issue further updates as new information becomes available. Photographs of this crack and activity at the ocean entry can be found at https://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/multimedia/
For more information on hazards associated with lava entering the sea, see: https://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2000/fs152-00/
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THE ANNUAL KA`U COFFEE FESTIVAL has been set to run through three weekends and one week in May.
      The festival begins with the Miss Ka`u Coffee Pageant on Saturday, May 13 at Ka`u Coffee Mill. The kickoff Pa`ina and Open House for the festival is set for Friday, May 19 at Pahala Plantation House. On Saturday, May 20 is the annual Ka`u Coffee Recipe Contest at Ka`u Coffee Mill – recipes invited, followed by Stargazing on Monday, May 22 at Makanao.
    On Wednesday and Thursday, May 24 and 25 are two opportunities to go on the Ka`u Mountain Water System Hike on Edmund C. Olson Trust Lands.
     On Saturday, May 2 is the main event, the Ka`u Coffee Festival Ho`olaulea at Ka`u Community Center and its surrounding grounds, with coffee tasting, Ka`u Coffee sales, food and educational booths and entertainment all day. On Sunday, May 28 is the Ka`u Coffee College.
     Check the website at kaucoffeefest.com for more information and schedule updates.
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STEWARDSHIP AT THE SUMMIT, Friday, Feb. 3, 11, 18, 20; 9 a.m. – 12 p.m., Kīlauea Visitor Center in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Volunteers clear ginger from park trails. Free; park entrance fees apply. nps.gov/havo

HAM RADIO OPERATORS Potluck Picnic, Sunday, Feb. 5, Manuka Park. All American Radio Emergency Service members, anyone interested in learning how to operate a ham radio and families are invited to attend. Dennis Smith, 989-3028

PU`U O LOKUANA, Sunday, Feb. 5, 9:30 – 10:30 a.m., Kahuku unit of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Participants learn about formation and various uses of this grassy cinder cone and enjoy a breathtaking view of lower Ka‘ū on this free, moderately difficult 0.4-mile hike to the top.