Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Friday, Sept. 9, 2016

Ocean warming may be the greatest hidden challenge of our generation, according to a lead author
of a report on the subject. See more below. Photo by Deepak Apte from IUCN
PAHALA TOWN SQUARE & HAWAIIAN SPRINGS FACILITY’S proposed water bottling plant and retail visitor center on Maile Street on the old sugar mill site in Pahala will be subject to testing of its water source, according to the state Department of Health Clean Water Branch inspector Dale Nagata. Nagata, who works out of the Hilo Clean Water Branch, said that any company bottling water provides results of water testing that covers pathogens, heavy metals, pesticides and other risks before approvals are given. The testing is required at least yearly, he said.
The existing well shaft is near a proposed warehouse.
Map from Hawai`i County Planning Department
      Diagrams submitted to Hawai`i County Planning Department show the existing well shaft at the old mill site.
      Nagata said most bottling companies use filters and inject ozone into the water to help meet standards. He said he is unaware of the Pahala Town Square proposal. However, he said that if it’s related to the Hawaiian Springs company in Kea`au, there should be no problem since it has a good record for clean water.
      County Planning Director Duane Kanuha is considering approval of the plan to build a retail center with tour bus and van parking, along with an 80,000 square foot warehouse and a 30,000 square foot bottling facility.
      Comments on the plan can be sent to planning@hawaiicounty.gov, susan.gagorik@hawaiicounty.gov and larry.nakayama@hawaiicounty.gov.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

OCEAN WARMING MAY WELL TURN OUT to be the greatest hidden challenge of our generation, according to Dan Laffoley, Marine Vice Chair of the World Commission on Protected Areas at International Union for Conservation of Nature and one of the lead authors of a new IUCN report on ocean warming. The report was launched at IUCN’s World Conservation Congress in Honolulu, where delegates are emphasizing the urgency of addressing climate change. “We should reflect that we are locking in a worrying warming trend in the ocean, the only ocean we have, on the only world we know, teeming with life,” a statement from the congress reads. “Now is the moment to be wise and act. Future generations will then no doubt thank us for the wisdom of our deeds.”
Dan Laffoley
      The report, entitled Explaining Ocean Warming: Causes, Scale, Effects and Consequences, sets out the most recent and comprehensive review to date on the topic and shows a complex story of change in the ocean. According to the congress, this change has already begun to impact people’s lives. “This is no longer a single story of ocean warming challenges to coral reefs, but a rapidly growing list of alarming changes across species at ecosystem scales, and across geographies spanning the entire world,” the statement says. “It is pervasive change, driven by ocean warming and other stressors already operating in ways we are only beginning to understand, where essential gaps in marine data, systems and capabilities are leaving the world poorly prepared to cope in the future.”
      Compiled for IUCN by 80 scientists in 12 countries, the report explores impacts of ocean warming on ecosystems and species, and on everyday benefits derived from the ocean – its “goods and services.”
      Major changes caused by ocean warming and other stressors described in the report include impacts on entire ecosystems from polar to tropical regions, predicted to increase further in scale, stretching from accessible coasts to the deep ocean seabed; entire groups of species such as plankton, jellyfish, fish, turtles and seabirds being driven by up to 10 degrees of latitude towards the Earth’s poles to keep within reasonable environmental conditions; loss of breeding grounds for groups such as turtles and seabirds, and impacts on the breeding success of birds and sea mammals; and seasonality shifts by plankton, leading to potential mismatch between plankton species with fish and other marine wildlife.
Sen. Russell Ruderman at IUCN World Conservation Congress.
Photo from Sen. Ruderman
      Changes in the ocean are happening between 1.5 and five times faster than those on land. Such range shifts are potentially irreversible, with great impacts on ecosystems. “What this will result in, decades down the line, is less clear,” the statement says. “It is an experiment where, rather than being a casual observer in the lab, we have unwittingly placed ourselves inside the test-tube.”
      The report also describes inadequacy of current knowledge, capabilities and capacity to adequately study ocean warming and to advise and cope with associated challenges. “The global community is increasingly committing itself to a high-carbon future, which it is poorly equipped to understand, let alone cope with,” the statement says. “The impacts are already outstripping what is fully understood and the capacity of the global community to act.
      “The world, perhaps distracted by the bustle of daily issues on land, has been ignoring the impact climate change has been having on the largest living space on the planet – the ocean. The ocean lies at the heart of the climate system, and it must now lie at the heart of climate discussions. Through the implementation of the Paris Agreement under the UNFCCC, Parties should now consider ocean impacts in the so-called ‘nationally determined contributions’ outlining national best efforts towards a sustainable low carbon future. It is now critical to address atmospheric CO2 – the root cause of these and so many other problems – and achieve rapid and significant reductions of what we emit.”
      Ka`u’s state Sen. Russell Ruderman attended the IUCN World Conservation Congress this week. “I was so inspired to see dedicated people from all over the world working to protect our planet,” he said.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

HAWAI`I’S U.S. SENATORS Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono joined 25 colleagues in sending a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan urging him to bring the $1.1 billion Zika funding legislation passed by the Senate to the House floor for a vote. As of today, there are more than 18,000 cases of Zika reported in the United States and its territories.
      “Zika is now well established in the United States with cases of local transmission by mosquitoes being reported in multiple areas of Florida, as well as the U.S. territories,” the senators wrote. “While babies die, pregnant women and communities suffer, adults worry about future long-term neurological risks from Zika, and U.S. service members and military bases are affected, Congress remains deadlocked in partisan politics. Now is the time to lead and to show the American people that Congress will act to protect them.”
      In their letter, the senators noted the broad bipartisan support in the Senate to act on Zika funding. They cited passage of the Blunt-Murray compromise amendment to the Fiscal Year 2017 MilCon-VA appropriations bill, which included support of 23 Senate Republicans. The letter also reminds the House Speaker that more than 50 health, public health, provider and other organizations have urged Congress to pass a Zika funding bill that can be signed by the president immediately.
      Current funds to address Zika have begun to expire, leaving the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention without resources to effectively combat the virus. Due to congressional inaction, the White House has supplemented funding to address Zika by reallocating funds from other public health threats like Ebola. This funding, however, will run out in September.
      “It’s been nearly four months since the Senate overwhelmingly passed a compromise measure that would fund the fight against Zika,” Hirono said. “Since then, it has become clear that Congressional Republicans would rather limit access to family planning services - which puts millions more women at risk of contracting Zika and giving birth to a child with microcephaly - than ensure that we are fully prepared to combat this disease.”
      Eleven travel-acquired cases of Zika have been reported in Hawai`i.
Trojan wahine traveled to Kamehameha this week.
Photo from KHPES by Chad Keone Farias 
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

KA`U HIGH GIRLS VOLLEYBALL teams traveled to Kea`au Wednesday to play at Kamehameha Schools. Junior varsity lost in two straight sets, 10-25 and 12-25. Varsity also lost in the best three out of five sets, 8-25, 8-25 and 16-25.
      The teams host Christian Liberty tomorrow at 10 a.m.

OCEAN VIEW COMMUNITY CENTER holds its monthly pancake breakfast tomorrow from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Help remove invasive faya trees next Friday. Photo from FHVNP
VOLUNTEERS ARE NEEDED for Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park’s forest restoration project next Friday. Participants will remove invasive faya trees, providing hands-on learning about the importance of managing invasive plants and how this practice complements out-planting and other restoration practices. 
      “We appreciate the support,” FHVNP Executive Director Elizabeth Fien said. “Removing invasive species in the park is a critical job. We are making progress, and without your help, this would not be possible.”
      Contact Patty Kupchak at forest@fhvnp.org or 352-1402 by Monday evening to register.

REGISTRATION FOR KA`U Coffee Trail Run is available through race morning, a week from tomorrow, at 6:30 a.m.
The event includes a 5K, 10K and Half Marathon through coffee and former sugar cane fields, macadamia nut groves, eucalyptus forests and grazing pastures.
      All races begin and finish at Ka`u Coffee Mill.
      Register at race360.com/21357.


Click on document to enlarge

See kaucalendar.com.

See kaucalendar.com/TheDirectory2016.html
and kaucalendar.com/TheDirectory2016.pdf.

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