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Wednesday, June 07, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs, Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Eruption began at Halema'uma'u on Wednesday morning. Photo by USGS

USGS HAWAIIAN VOLCANO OBSERVATORY ISSUED A RED/WARNING Wednesday morning as Kīlauea summit eruption began in Halema‘uma‘u. At approximately 4:44 a.m. USGS detected glow in Kīlauea summit webcam images indicating an eruption commenced within Halemaʻumaʻu crater in Kīlauea’s summit caldera, within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.

Scientists record the beginning of the new eruption USGS photo
    USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory elevated Kīlauea’s volcano alert level from WATCH to WARNING and its aviation color code from ORANGE to RED as this eruption and associated hazards were evaluated. HVO noted that "opening phases of eruptions are dynamic. Webcam imagery shows fissures at the base of Halemaʻumaʻu crater generating lava flows on the surface of the crater floor. The activity is confined to Halemaʻumaʻu and the hazards will be reassessed as the eruption progresses. Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park posted: "During the early stages of the eruption lava fountains soared as high as 15 meters (50 feet) on the regular, with bursts shooting up to a whopping 60 meters (200 feet)!
In just three hours, the lower-section of the crater was filled to the brim with lava, reaching an impressive depth of 10 meters (33 feet). The lava lake covered a massive area of approximately 370 acres (150 hectares) on the crater floor.
     "This morning, a sulfur dioxide emission rate of around 65,000 tonnes per day was measured.
As time passed, the fountain heights gradually decreased and are now ranging from 4 to 9 meters (13 to 30 feet) high. It's still a sight to behold!"
     To keep up with the changes, see : https://www.nps.gov/.../nature/june-2023-summit-eruption.htm
#KilaueaEruption #LavaLove
    Hawaiian Volcano Observatory noted that "high levels of volcanic gas are the primary hazard of concern, as this hazard can have far-reaching effects down-wind. Large amounts of volcanic gas—primarily water vapor (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), and sulfur dioxide (SO2)—are continuously released during eruptions of Kīlauea volcano. As SO2 is released from the summit, it will react in the atmosphere to create the visible haze known as vog (volcanic smog) that has been observed downwind of Kīlauea. Vog creates the potential for airborne health hazards to residents and visitors, damages agricultural crops and other plants, and affects livestock." 
HVO scientists monitor the ongoing Kīlauea summit eruption from within an area of Hawai‘i VolcanoesNational Park that remains closed to the public for safety reasons. They are equipped with a range of specialized safety gear and personal protective equipment such as gas masks, helmets, gloves, and eye protection. USGS photo
    For more information on gas hazards at the summit of Kīlauea, see: https://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/fs20173017. Vog information can be found at https://vog.ivhhn.org/.       As of 7:21 p.m.. Wednesday, SO2 levels islandwide were Good. 

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KAUKAU 4 KEIKI REGISTRATION OPENED ON MONDAY FOR FREE FOOD from June 19 through July 28. Registrations came in rapidly and new applicants will go on a waitlist. Register for the waitlist at www.vibranthawaii.org/kaukau4keiki.  Food is provided for keiki 18 and under or up to  22 years of age with a disability and enrolled in public school.
      Vibrant Hawai'i and its Resilience Hubs in Volcano, Pāhala, Nā'ālehu, Ocean View and Miloli'i will provide breakfast and lunch items weekly to families with children who sign up in advance. The fresh and shelf-stable foods will be provided for six weeks beginning June 19 and ending July 28.
     Registered recipients will be able to pick up food on Mondays from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Cooper Center Community Pantry in Volcano, 19-4030 Wright Road;  on Wednesdays from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Pāhala Hongwanji, 96-1123 Pa'a'au Place; on Wednesdays from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Nā'ālehu Hongwanji, 96-5695 Highway 11; on Wednesdays from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. in Ocean View at 92-1421 Princess Kaiulani Blvd; and on Wednesdays from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Miloli'i Halau at 89-1825 Miloli'i Road.
   Applications are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. The program is sponsored by U.S. Department of Agriculture and partners, with 35 pickup locations around the island. 

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A SECOND REMOVAL OF HOMELESS PEOPLE AND THEIR BELONGINGS FROM A COUNTY PARK took place on Wednesday and more are to come, according to an announcement from Hawai'i County. The County is also expected to soon hire night time security to enforce camping and other rules at Punalu'u. The County advised that it "would like to remind the public that future enforcement efforts are planned to address various issues at parks around the island as part of ongoing initiatives to ensure the safety, cleanliness, and functionality of public spaces." County Parks in Volcano through Kaʻū and Miloli'i are at Cooper Center, Pāhala, Punalu'u, Honu'apo and Whittington, Nā'ālehu, Wai'ohinu and Miloli'i. 
    The County announcement said: "Earlier today, the Hawaiʻi County Department of Parks & Recreation, in coordination with the Hawaiʻi Police Department, Office of Housing & Community Development, and
The County removed belongings of homeless people from
another county park on Wednesday and plans to head 
around the island, with outreach to the homeless and
park cleanups. Photo from County of Hawai'i

various nongovernment service providers, conducted a park rules enforcement effort at the Kona Community Aquatic Center. This operation, led by the directive of Hawaiʻi County Mayor Mitch Roth, aimed to address safety concerns and guarantee compliance with Parks' rules within the facility's grounds, ensuring the safety and functionality of the park for all residents and visitors. Seventeen individuals were impacted by the enforcement effort, with 13 receiving vital services, including housing, airfare, and relocation services. The other four refused assistance."
     The Mayor said, "Today's park rules enforcement effort at the Kona Community Aquatic Center reflects our unwavering commitment to safety, compassion, and the well-being of our community. We are not embarking on malicious sweeps; we are upholding the law while providing vital services and resources to enhance the quality of life for those affected by it. By working together with dignity and aloha, we are building a future where our public spaces are safe, clean, and inclusive for everyone."
   The announcement from the County said: "To ensure the proper handling of all personal property, the County arranged for a secure storage facility. The 21 bags of personal belongings from three individuals were carefully stored and inventoried, allowing individuals to easily retrieve their belongings within a 30-day period. Two truckloads of miscellaneous trash were also recovered and disposed of."

    Similarly to the Hale Hālāwai Parks' Enforcement Operation, outreach specialists from service provider organizations engaged with individuals in the area prior to the enforcement effort to provide support and connect them with appropriate resources. "With the successful completion of the outreach and enforcement effort, all safety and rule violations within the Kona Community Aquatic Center have been addressed. Mayor Roth's focus is now on restoring the intended purpose of the park, creating a safe and enjoyable environment for all residents and visitors," said the statement from the County.

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HAWAI'I AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION ISSUED A STATEMENT OPPOSING THE "SWEEP" OF HOUSELESS PEOPLE from a County facility on Wednesday. It said, "We are disappointed to learn that today, Mayor Mitch Roth and the County of Hawaiʻi once again stripped houseless residents of their personal belongings and forcibly removed them from their place of residence without due regard for their constitutional rights. For those impacted please follow our Community Alliance Partners on Moku o Keawe, Neighborhood Place of Puna(@neighborhood_place), and HOPE Services Hawaii, Inc.(@hopeserviceshawaii)."
Hawai'i ACLU offered tips for anyone else facing similar enforcement actions:
The Ka'u Calendar: 5,000 in the mail, 2,500 on stands.
Also see www.kaucalendar.com