Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Monday, July 18, 2016

A Science Camps of America participant zoomed in for a close-up shot of activity at Kilauea's summit
on the last night of camp. See more below. Photo from SCA
NEXTERA ENERGY, INC. and Hawaiian Electric Industries, Inc. today announced termination of their plans to merge, effective immediately. The decision was driven by the Hawai`i Public Utilities Commission’s order to dismiss the companies’ merger application. In its decision, the PUC emphasized that it is not precluding HEI from renewing discussions with NextEra.
Connie Lau and Jim Robo Photo from NextEra Energy
      “As a result of the PUC’s order, we have terminated our merger agreement,” said Jim Robo, chairman and chief executive officer, NextEra Energy. “We wish Hawaiian Electric the best as it serves the current and future energy needs of Hawai`i, including helping the state meet its goal of 100 percent renewable energy by 2045. Looking forward, NextEra Energy remains extremely well-positioned to execute on our strategy and deliver exceptional results for our customers and shareholders.”
      “We appreciate NextEra Energy’s interest in Hawai`i and in our company,” said Connie Lau, HEI’s president and chief executive officer and chairman of the boards of Hawaiian Electric and American Savings Bank. “All of us at HEI, Hawaiian Electric and American Savings Bank remain committed to serving our customers, and we look forward to working together with communities across our state to realize the clean energy future we all want for Hawai`i and to ensure a vibrant local economy.”
      Under terms of the merger agreement, NextEra Energy will pay Hawaiian Electric Industries a $90 million break-up fee and up to $5 million for reimbursement of expenses associated with the transaction.
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Storms in the Pacific include remnants of Celia, north of Hawai`i;
Hurricane Darby, heading toward Hawai`i; and Tropical Storm
Estelle, west of Mexico. Image from University of Hawai`i
HURRICANE DARBY WAS LOCATED about 1,540 miles east of South Point, the National Hurricane Center reported at 7:40 a.m. Darby is forecast to gradually weaken over the next couple of days and is expected to cross longitude 140W into the Central Pacific Hurricane Center’s area of responsibility late tomorrow night as a tropical storm. A generally westward to west-northwestward motion is expected, with a brief turn slightly to the south of west around Wednesday.
      NHC forecast calls for Estelle, which is behind Darby, to become a hurricane during the next 12 to 24 hours. After 36 hours, less favorable conditions should cause weakening. A faster rate of reduction in wind speed should occur later, and Estelle is predicted to become post-tropical on Thursday.
      A surface low, the remnant of ex-Tropical Cyclone Celia, was centered about 220 miles northeast of Honolulu and moving west at 10 mph. Atmospheric conditions are not conducive for tropical cyclone redevelopment.  
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Land & Sea campers learned about marine debris, cleaning up the Ka`u Coast. Photos from Science Camps of America
Air & Space campers tested their skills
at rocket science.

PARTICIPANTS AT SCIENCE CAMPS of America spent their final evening at Kilauea volcano last night to see the glow from the lava lake and stargaze on a perfectly clear night. Campers stayed at Pahala Plantation Cottages while visiting many locations.
      Land & Sea Campers from June 29 to July 8 explored Hawai`i Island, focusing on geology and oceanography in what founder Michael Richards considers the world’s greatest laboratory for Earth Science.
      From July 9-18, Air & Space Campers learned about atmosphere, climate, weather, astronomy, space and alternative energy.
      For more information, see sciencecampsamerica.com.
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RECYCLE HAWAI`I AND EARTH-FRIENDLY Schools Hawai‘i have selected Ocean View’s South Point U-Cart for one of its Keeping It Green Hawai`i Awards. South Point U-Cart participates in the Used Motor Oil program, a cooperative project by Recycle Hawai`i, County of Hawai`i Department of Environmental Management and private businesses on Hawai`i Island. Project businesses have served on a voluntary basis as permanent collection sites for resident do-it-yourself users to take their used motor oil for proper disposal.
      Used motor oil picked up from collection sites by Hawai`i Petroleum is temporarily stored in a sealed container in Hilo. From there, it is recycled to produce electricity at various local businesses.
      “We mahalo these businesses for their years of community service, commitment and comprehensive support for reducing significant amounts of hazardous materials into our environment through responsible waste management,” said Recycle Hawai`i executive director Paul Buklarewicz.
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A new commission seeks nominations for members to represent
interests of local hunters. Photo from Royden Okinishi
THE NEWLY FORMED STATE Game Management Advisory Commission seeks nominations for members. Individuals who would like to represent interests of local hunters and actively participating in Hawai`i’s game resource management are welcome and encouraged to apply to serve. Gov. David Ige signed House Bill 1041, Act 210, establishing the commission, on July 5.
      The commission will serve in an advisory capacity to the Board of Land and Natural Resources and may recommend policies and criteria regarding the management, protection and promotion of public hunting in Hawai`i. Additionally, the commission may recommend amendments to existing department policies.
      In order to be eligible to serve on the commission, one member must be a hunter licensed in the state under this chapter and with leadership experience in working directly with local hunter or shooting organizations. At least one member is also required to have knowledge, experience and expertise in the area of native Hawaiian cultural practices.
      Applications may be made online at http://boards.hawaii.gov/apply/apply-for-a-board/. Select DLNR – Game Management Advisory Commission.
Dr. Claire Horwell
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DR. CLAIRE HORWELL, FROM DURHAM University, presents results and outcomes of her vog study at Pahala Library on Aug. 9 from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 pm. Horwell conducted several focus groups in Ka`u in January 2015 on vog and then conducted surveys to assess how residents are protecting themselves from vog and how they would like to receive information on vog.
      USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory personnel will provide background information at on the volcano and its current eruptive and degassing status during the presentation.
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Coffee quality grader Sunalini Menon
Photo from Ka`u Specialty Coffee
QUALITY GRADER AND LIFETIME COFFEE professional Sunalini Menon will offer a coffee quality workshop for Ka`u farmers on Sept. 26 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. She will be holding a Q&A session after the workshop for any farmers who have questions. On Sept. 27, Menon will visit farms of workshop participants in the Ka`u area.
      Menon has worked with farmers all over the world who depend on coffee for a living, including in Africa, South America, Southeast Asia and India. Her particular joy is to make improving quality easy to understand and fun.
      The workshop includes a presentation on interconnection between post-harvest processing and quality in the cup, followed by practical exercises, which would include visual evaluation and cupping.
      This event is free to current members of Ka`u Coffee Growers Cooperative or Palehua `Ohana Cooperative. All other attendees are requested to make a $200 donation to support Menon’s travel fees. Make checks payable to Malian Lahey and send to PO Box 192, Pahala, HI 96777.
      Space is limited, so reserve in advance by emailing malian@kauspecialtycoffee.com or calling 503-575-9098.
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`Alala Sketch by John Dawson Image from VAC
VOLCANO ART CENTER INVITES all ages to a mask-making event Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Held on the porch of the Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, this is a free activity, although park entrance fees apply. Keiki must be accompanied by an adult.
      This hands-on activity results in a mask depicting the endangered `Alala. Supplies are provided, although participants are welcome to bring their own materials to add to the fun.
      The activity is part of a series of programs and events benefiting San Diego Zoo Global’s Hawai`i’s Endangered Bird Recovery Program. Participants learn more about the `alala and its reintroduction into Hawai`i’s forests scheduled for November of this year.
      For more information, call 967-7565.

KANAKA TREE PERFORMS Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Kiliona Moku Young, T.R. Ireland, Kalei Young and the Young ‘ohana blend the classic sounds of Hawaiian music with fresh rhythms and melodies.
      Free; park entrance fees apply.


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