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, March 11, 2022

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Friday, March 11, 2022

Storm Clouds Burst Over Kīlauea
Lava is not the only spectacular natural event at Kilauea Crater. Storm Clouds seem to burst
over Kīlauea on Thursday. See more at https://www.facebook.com/hawaiivolcanoesnps
 NPS photo by Janice Wei

WITH ELECTRIC BILLS EXPECTED TO SOAR IN NEXT FEW MONTHS, Hawaiian Electric launched its Shared Solar Program on Friday. A statement from Hawaiian Electric says it is, "the latest phase of community-based renewable energy" for developers of small and large projects – including those tailored to low- and moderate-income customers. It is available for small projects (up to 250 kilowatts). Projects that qualify will be accepted in a four-month application window on a first-come basis up to the program’s capacity limit for each island.
    “We’re excited to launch shared solar, designed to bring savings and a chance to participate in the renewable energy movement to many more customers, especially those who aren’t able to install a private rooftop solar system,” said Lani Shinsato, director of customer energy resources, programs. “To get the most out of shared solar, we need subscriber organizations – including nonprofits, homeowner associations and churches – to get involved so that these groups and those they serve can share in the benefits."
     Shared solar provides a way for subscribers to benefit from the electricity generated by a solar energy facility located on the same island. Electricity from a shared solar project will enter the island grid to help the state achieve its renewable energy goals. Once a shared solar project is complete, tested and approved to begin sending electricity to the grid, subscribers will get credit on their monthly electric bill based on their level of participation in the project.
    The available solar capacity of the shared solar program is over 250 megawatts, potentially including energy storage, across the five islands Hawaiian Electric serves. Some project sizes are limited in capacity. But mid-tier and large projects tailored for low- and moderate-income customers are not capped. Organizations that primarily serve such customers can apply to be a subscriber organization, which will recruit participants, and/or anchor tenants that participate directly in the solar savings. Details of the program can be found on our CBRE Resources page. A program guide for subscriber organizations that outlines the small project process can be found at hawaiianelectric.com/sharedsolar.
Non-profits, churches, community groups can
 sponsor shared solar through Hawaiian Electric.
Image from Hawaiian Electric

    Larger projects (250 kW and above) will be procured through a formal RFP process. More details can be found on our Competitive Bidding for New Generation page. Potential solar developers and subscriber organizations that are able to recruit customers to be “subscribers” in a small project should register at https://communityenergyhawaii.com, the shared solar portal. Potential subscribers do not need to register until projects are approved.
    "After listening to community concerns about renewable energy project siting, regulators approved Hawaiian Electric’s request to allow residents who live near a large shared solar project the first chance at becoming subscribers," says the Hawaiian Electric statement.

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WHILE COVID MAY APPEAR TO BE IN THE REAR VIEW MIRROW, Sen. Mazie Hirono issued a statement today on the one-year anniversary of President Biden signing the American Rescue Plan: "The devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has affected communities in Hawai'i and across the country. The American Rescue Plan allocated crucial funding to help lower costs for families, address the housing crisis, and provide resources and support to respond to this public health emergency. In Hawai'i, the ARP provided $4.6 billion in aid to help our schools provide safe, in-person learning and address 

learning loss, distribute vaccines, expand access to health care, and provide immediate and long-term relief to our state. Additionally, thanks to the advance Child Tax Credit payments, more than 150,000 families in Hawaii received $393 million between July and December of last year—with an average payment of $449 a month, per household.
    "All of this would not have been possible without Democrats passing and President Biden signing the American Rescue Plan," said Hirono. She noted that  Republican declined from voting "for this bill that helped American families. While this bill was a down payment to help families recover from COVID-19, there is still a lot of work to do. Families are still struggling with the impact of a global pandemic and a geopolitical crisis."

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MAGMA CHAMBER MUSIC CAN TELL A REVEALING TALE, according to Volcano Watch, the weekly column by U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists and affiliates. This week’s article was written by California Volcano Observatory research geophysicist Josh Crozier:
      In a lava lake, such as the one present from 2008–2018 in Kīlauea’s summit Halema‘uma‘u crater, we can sometimes visually observe these fluid motions as ripples or sloshing of the surface following disturbances from rockfalls or gas bursts.
    We can also detect deeper magma motion by using seismometers to measure ground vibrations. The seismic signals generated by magma motion, such as the example shown in the figure, are often distinct from other types of seismic signals. Compared to normal earthquakes, magma motion usually produces relatively slow vibrations, where the ground rises and falls over several seconds or tens of seconds.
A black and white figure showing two types of seismic signals

The top plot shows a 2013 seismic recording of a normal shallow magnitude-2 earthquake that occurred a few miles south of the summit of Kīlauea Volcano. The bottom plot shows a 2013 seismic recording of magma resonance after a large rock broke off the Halema‘uma‘u crater walls at the summit of Kīlauea Volcano and then impacted the lava lake surface. Note the different timescales; the normal earthquake only lasted for about 20 seconds in total, whereas each magma oscillation cycle lasted for 40 seconds and the vibrations continued for over 20 minutes in total.
    For decades scientists have been interpreting these seismic signals at volcanoes in Hawaiʻi and around the world as evidence of underground magma migration or accumulation, which can be used to look for signs that might indicate an impending eruption. In recent years, scientists have been learning new methods to use these seismic signals to resolve properties of underground magma systems that might not otherwise be measurable.
    Magma or lava bodies vibrate most strongly at certain frequencies, called resonant frequencies, that depend on the body’s geometry and the properties of the magma or lava it contains, such as temperature and gas content. This is similar to how the musical notes produced by an instrument like a pan flute, bell, or a kāʻekeʻeke depend on the instrument’s shape and the properties of the air in it.
  If a magma or lava is very fluid, for example like water rather than maple syrup, then a single perturbation can cause the magma body to resonate (vibrate or slosh at its strongest frequencies) for tens of minutes, such as the example shown in the figure.
Magma or lava bodies vibrate like musical notes.
Photo from Friends of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park
    Changes in the resonance frequencies can indicate changes in the amount of gas contained within the magma or lava, which is important for understanding its eruptive potential. Additionally, changes in the resonance duration (how long vibrations last) can indicate changes in the magma or lava temperature, which tells us if fresh hot magma is being brought up from deeper in the earth.
    Such resonance has helped to reveal Kīlauea’s shallow summit magma system geometry, for example suggesting that the conduit connecting its shallow summit magma reservoir with the overlying lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u from 2008–2018 was more than 50 feet wide. It has also revealed complex magma dynamics over the past decade, including convective overturns and melt supply pulses, which inform the restless nature of Kīlauea Volcano.
    If you have a chance to stand near one of Hawaii’s active volcanoes, remember that the magma several kilometers beneath your feet could be subtly vibrating. And if visiting a volcano isn’t convenient, just tap on the side of a glass of water and watch the fluid resonance that results.
    See more from Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists at https://www.usgs.gov/observatories/hvo

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