(Note: scroll down for 24 photos of our spectacular St. Pat’s benefit)
LAHAINA, Mar. 29–Considering that “people come here for the natural beauty,” Maui is being shortsighted when laws are not followed by developers or enforced by government, a leading “water scientist” told members and guests of the Rotary Club of Lahaina Sunset this week.
The fifth speaker in a Rotary series on the environment, Mark Deakos, executive director of the Hawaii Association for Marine Education and Research, told Rotarians that our reefs are in danger from sediment from the land that is filled with pollutants, herbicides and pesticides that end up in the ocean.
When water filled with sediment from pipes as tall as a man pour into the ocean, it replaces natural sand and clouds up through wave action, preventing light from reaching life nurturing coral.
One of the biggest areas at risk is Olowalu where 370 manrays and other marine animals make their home. Plans for development of Olowalu pose significant danger to the reefs unless proper procedures are followed, Deakos said.d
Water reaches the ocean through literally hundreds of pipes that stretch from Naplii to Lahaina, New technology allows for the continuous measurement of the quality of water over the world wide web if developers are willing to install it, Deako said.
Water gets to the ocean through these pipes or by flowing naturally from the land. Vegetation on the land absorbs moisture and keeps it from the ocean. When there is concrete or no vegetation, water eventually flows downhill to the sea.
Although there are a number of West Maui organizations monitoring water quality and gathering statistics, the state has only one health officer to keep track of water quality and enforce regulations in all of Maui County.
The water scientist pointed out that violation of the Cean Water Act is a criminal offense which provides for penalties of $27,000 a day for violators.
The flow of water in developments is self monitored. A land owner can walk through a property twice a week, observe that everything is ok when it may not be, and then move on., according to the association’s executive director.
To reverse many of these trends, the County of Maui as well as the state must do a much better job enforcing the laws and providing support for proper monitoring. Legisltors need to step up and pay more attention to the need for enforcement, Deakos said.
GO FOR GREEN THIRD SATURDAY. You name it. Tires, batteries, appliances, bicycles and more common recyclable items all made it to Lahaina Cannery Mall in fourth monthly event. Representative Angus McKelvey joined Rotary and other volunteers. VISIT THIS SPACE FREQUENTLY FOR CLUB UPDATES.
BECOME A FOLLOWER AND RECEIVE EMAIL ALERTS USUALLY NO MORE THAN ONE A WEEK.
LAHAINA – West Maui residents have responded with enthusiasm to the monthly “Go Green Third Saturday Recycling” events at Lahaina Cannery Mall. Our club and the other sponsors of the monthly event , which began in July, report that recycling bins have been filled completely for both the July and August events.
“The community response has been overwhelming,” said John de Jesus, executive director of Malama Maui Nui, a co-sponsor of the monthly events.
“In July, we filled all the bins well before the noon closing time. In August, we brought extra bins and filled them all again. Judging from the response, these monthly events are certainly meeting the needs of the West Maui community.”
The next “Go Green Third Saturday Recycling” event will be held on Sept. 19 from 8 a.m. to noon at Lahaina Cannery Mall.
The sponsors report the following recycling results for the August event alone: 40 major appliances, 6,450 pounds of scrap metal, 164 pieces of electronic gear, 11 automobile tires, 700 household batteries, eight gallons of cooking oil and hundreds of pounds of cardboard, paper, glass and cans.
“In just two months, we’ve diverted nearly ten tons of material from the Maui County landfill,” said Sandy Schneider, president of the Rotary Club of Lahaina Sunset, a co-sponsor of the monthly events.
“We’re also aware that we’re helping residents who might otherwise dispose of bulky items, like appliances and scrap metal, in inappropriate places throughout our community. These ‘Go Green Third Saturday Recycling’ events are a win-win for residents and our island.”
The next “Go Green Third Saturday Recycling” event will be held on Sept. 19, from 8 a.m. to noon at Lahaina Cannery Mall.
Virtually all recyclables are accepted except oversize tires, clothing and household goods. There is no fee to drop off items, although a $5 donation is requested for each tire. No fees are paid to residents for recyclables delivered to the event.
In addition to Malama Maui Nui and the Rotary Club of Lahaina Sunset, co-sponsors of the monthly events include 5A Rent-A-Space in Honokowai, Lahaina Cannery Mall and the County of Maui.
“These events were made possible by a $15,000 grant from Maui County,” noted de Jesus. “Councilmember Elle Cochran led the effort to add these funds to the county budget, and we are indebted to her and the County Council for making this monthly program possible.”
“Go Green Third Saturday Recycling” events will continue through June 2016. For more information, or to volunteer to help at the events, contact Liz May at 5A Rent-A-Space at 669-5200. Able volunteers are needed to assist in handling large drop-offs.