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Friday, October 13, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs Friday, Oct. 13, 2023

Varsity Girls Volleyball team from Kaʻū High took first in BIIF Division II with a win over Honoka‘a, achieving
a perfect season on the road on Friday. Photo by Jen Makuakane

A PERFECT SEASON IN KAʻŪ TROJAN  VARSITY GIRLS VOLLEYBALL is achieved, with Kaʻū beating Honoka‘a on Friday with its 12th straight win and no losses. Kaʻū took first place in Big Island Interscholastic Federation's Division and earned a Hawai‘i High School Athletic Association berth. Trojans will travel to O‘ahu for state competition in early November. Kaʻū will also host a BIIF semi-finals game on Thursday, Oct. 26 
at Herkes Kaʻū District Gym.                       
    Kaʻū Junior Varsity also won on Friday with 25-19 and 25-21 scores over Honoka‘a.
Girls Varsity Volleyball Coach is Kamalani Fujikawa. Assistant Coach is Marley Strand Nicolaison. Volunteer Coaches are Sandy Fujikawa-Carvalho and Dave Carvalho. Manager is Karsen Polido-Tuaffaiva. Athletic Trainer is Moses Whitcomb.

Kaʻū Little League hosted the State Championships in 2019. Photo from Kaʻū Little League

KAʻŪ LITTLE LEAGUE'S ANNUAL MEETING WILL BE TUESDAY,  Oct. 17 at 7 p.m. at Kahuku Park in Ocean View across from St. Judes Church.
     Board elections will be held. To become a member call Elizabeth Crook at 808-345-0511. All members can nominate new board members and vote at the annual meeting. 
    "Any adult person sincerely interested in active participation to further the objective of this league may apply to become a Regular Member." says the statement from Josh Crook, President of Kaʻū Little League
   Nominations for Kaʻū Little League board are due Oct 13. Email nominations to kaulittleleague@yahoo.com All Volunteers from last season are automatically Little League members. There is no membership fee this year.

THE GREAT HAWAI‘I SHAKEOUT is the focus of this week's Volcano Watch by Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geophysicist Jefferson Chang. The Great Hawai‘i Shakeout is a yearly event for kamaʻāina and visitors to practice and prepare for when a large damaging earthquake hits the Hawaiian Islands. Every year, an earthquake drill happens on the third Thursday of October. This year, the ShakeOut is set for Oct.19 at 10:19 a.m. HST.

During Kīlauea's 2018 summit collapse and lower East Rift Zone eruption, more than 60,000 earthquakes occurred. Portions of Crater Rim Drive, pictured here and which used to go around Kīlauea summit caldera within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, collapsed into the caldera. 
USGS image by K. Mulliken

    “Drop! Cover! Hold on!” is the ShakeOut motto. But why? None of those actions can stop the shaking brought on by seismic waves rolling through wherever you are.
    We drop to lower our center of gravity so that it is more difficult for us to be thrown down by the ground that is violently moving in several different directions.
    We take cover under something secure, like a sturdy desk or a thick bed mattress, to protect ourselves from objects that might fall or topple over, like ceiling fans, bookshelves, or televisions. If no cover is readily available, cover your head with your arms—some protection is better than no protection.
    We hold on to sturdy fixtures, like a desk or table leg, so our cover stays with us, since the ground is moving up and down and side-to-side.
    Here in Hawai‘i, thousands of earthquakes happen every year. Kamaʻāina and visitors might notice that the feeling of shaking is not always the same, even for earthquakes of similar magnitudes and that are just as far away.
    This is because shaking is just one way that an earthquake releases energy. Earthquake energy is also released thermally and mechanically. This means there are three categories that comprise the “earthquake energy budget,” or the total energy released by an earthquake.
    During an earthquake, rocks break and then slide past each other to release the built-up stresses imposed on them by tectonic or magmatic forces.
    When rocks slide against each other, friction generates heat along the sliding surfaces. We are familiar with this, as it’s what warms our hands when we rub them together in cold weather. A portion of the total earthquake energy budget is spent thermally as the surrounding rocks generate heat sliding against each other.
    Another byproduct of rocks sliding against each other is broken bits of rocks along the sliding surface. This is similar to the sawdust generated when sandpaper moves across a plank of wood, or the little bits of rubber that come off when erasing pencil marks on paper. A portion of the total earthquake energy budget is spent on mechanical wear, as surrounding rocks are broken.
    The last part of the earthquake energy budget is the one that affects most people, the radiated energy. The energy spent on heating and breaking the surrounding rocks only affects the immediate area of the fault, which is usually deep underground and has little relevance to humans that live on the surface.
Whatever portion of the total energy budget that is not spent on heating and mechanical wear is released as “radiated” energy, which refers to the seismic waves that are radiated from the parts of the fault that slipped. This is the ground motion we feel on the surface during an earthquake.
Every earthquake spends its total energy budget on these three things, but not in equal or constant portions.
    Earthquakes of the same magnitude (meaning they have the same total energy budget) may spend energy in different ways. One earthquake may spend most of its energy mechanically pulverizing little bits of the fault. Another earthquake, (perhaps on a more well-developed fault), might spend more on thermal heating or shaking the ground.
    That is why ground motion is not always comparable across earthquakes with similar magnitudes. An earthquake that uses the bulk of its energy into radiated energy might cause more shaking than a same-magnitude earthquake that spends all of its energy heating and breaking the surrounding rocks.
    With that said, if you feel the rumble of an earthquake, it is always a good idea to “Drop, cover, and hold on!”
  For practice, join USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, this Thursday, Oct. 19 at 10:19 a.m., as we participate in The Great Hawai‘i ShakeOut. For more information on how your ‘ohana or business can participate, see https://www.shakeout.org/hawaii/.

Kaʻū News Briefs Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023

A wildfire skirts a neighborhood in Kaʻū. Community groups, private landowners and government agencies  can sign
up for grant money to help prevent wildfires. Photo by Bob Martin

THE COMMUNITY WILDFIRE DEFENSE PROGRAM is drawing many applicants for funding, according to Hawai‘i Wildfire Management Organization. Grant applications are due Oct. 31. HWMO said this week that "Hawaiʻi is taking full advantage of this grant program. HWMO is encouraged that so many neighborhoods, land stewards, and agencies across Hawaiʻi are applying for funds to carrying out wildfire risk reduction projects that will help protect Hawai‘i's communities." The organization has hosted several workshops, held many office hours, and answered lots of questions about this grant program. The information that follows is a response to the most frequently asked questions. 
     The Community Wildfire Defense Program is intended to help at-risk local communities and Tribes to plan for and reduce the risk of wildfire. The program was authorized by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and prioritizes at-risk communities in an area identified as having high or very high wildfire hazard potential, are low-income, or have been impacted by a severe disaster that affects the risk of wildfire.
     The Community Wildfire Defense Grant Program also helps communities in the wildland urban interface implement the three goals of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy.
    The program provides funding to communities for two primary purposes: 
    Develop and revise Community Wildfire Protection Plans. Implement projects described in a Community Wildfire Protection Plan that is less than ten years old.
     Restore and Maintain Landscapes so that landscapes across all jurisdictions are resilient to fire-related disturbances, in accordance with management objectives.

     Create Fire Adapted Communities so that human populations and infrastructure can better withstand a wildfire without loss of life and property.
    Improve Wildfire Response so that all jurisdictions participate in making and implementing safe, effective, efficient risk-based wildfire management decisions.
    Projects that are eligible for CWDG funding must be identified as a priority project in the Community Wildfire Protection Plan that covers that geographic area. CWPPs can be found on the Hawaiʻi Wildfire Management Organization website: www.hawaiiwildfire.org/cwpp-resources and state Department of Land & Natural Resources website: dlnr.hawaii.gov/forestry/fire/community-risk-reduction/community-wildfire-protection-plans/. The Kaʻū area plan is to be updated through a recent grant to the state Department of Land & Natural Resources Division of Forestry & Wildlife.
    In addition, proposed projects need to support the Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy and relevant State Forest Action Plan (or equivalent Tribal plan), and should contribute or connect to broader wildfire risk reduction efforts. Applicants will be asked to provide a comprehensive but succinct overview of the proposed project that includes basic details of who is doing what, where, why this is important, and how it is described in the CWPP. Projects that benefit traditionally under-served or marginalized audiences are strongly encouraged.
   The announcement for the grant offers suggested considerations:
    Does the proposed project effectively reduce wildfire risk to the identified at-risk community, and how?
    Is the applicant reaching out across entities to be sure it is not duplicating or creating competition between like proposals?
    Are proposed risk-reduction activities integrated with ongoing wildfire risk-reduction efforts and partners?
    Would applicant like to be connected to other applicants that are proposing similar projects or that are proposing projects that benefit the same or adjacent at-risk communities? 
     "We want to ensure coordination and connectedness as we all move forward together toward protecting Hawaiʻi from wildfire. You can reach out to us by emailing admin@hawaiiwildfire.org or by submitting this assistant request form."

U.S. AND STATE OF HAWAI'I FLAGS WILL CONTINUE TO FLY HALF-STAFF until sunset next Tuesday, Oct. 17.  Gov. Josh Green ordered both flags to be flown at half-staff at Hawai‘i State Capitol and at all state offices and agencies, as well as at Hawai‘i National Guard facilities in the State of Hawai‘i.
    "This observance is to honor the lives of those lost, including Americans, that began with the attacks on Israel" last weekend, said a statement from Green's office.

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    Kaʻū High Trojan Girls beat Ka ‘Umeke Wednesday at home in three sets, 25-11, 25-6 and 25-9. The final game of the season is away at Honoka‘a beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday.