Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Friday, July 18, 2014

Ka`u residents are invited to the annual meeting of HHSC's East Hawai`i Regional Board of Directors tomorrow at 2 p.m. at Ka`u Hospital. Photo by Julia Neal
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN HONOLULU has issued a flash flood watch for all islands from 6 p.m. tomorrow through 6 p.m. Monday. Tropical Storm Wali, while expected to be downgraded to a tropical depression before arriving in Hawai`i, is predicted to bring heavy rain and thunderstorms to the islands. Rainfall amounts could exceed those recently experienced from remnants of Tropical Storm Fausto.
Effects of Wali are expected on Hawai`i Island Sunday evening.
      This morning at 5 a.m., the system was 950 miles east-southeast of South Point.
      A hurricane or tropical storm watch is issued when conditions are expected in the specified area of the watch within 48 hours.    
      When a hurricane or tropical storm watch is issued: 
  • Fuel and service family vehicles; 
  • Prepare to cover all windows and door openings with boards, shutters or other shielding materials; 
  • Store and secure outdoor lawn furniture and other loose, lightweight objects, such as garbage cans and garden tools; 
  • Check and replenish disaster supply kits; 
  • Have an extra supply of cash on hand.
      To track the storm, see weather.gov.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

THE FIRST PUBLISHED DESCRIPTION OF KILAUEA’S volcanic activity came from a team of missionaries on a tour of the Island of Hawai`i starting on this day, July 18, in 1823. Their trip, led by William Ellis, began in Kailua-Kona and took them around the southern coast and inland through Ka`u. When they were in the vicinity of Kapapala, their attention was drawn to some rising columns of “smoke” a few miles away.
      USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory chronicles the trip in its current issue of Volcano Watch. “The next morning, they decided to investigate and discovered a very recent fissure eruption along the Southwest Rift Zone of Kilauea Volcano. Later geological studies revealed that the source of this eruption was a 5.7-mile-long fissure that fed lava to the south into the sea. There were no spatter cones built by the eruption, and the lava seemed to have moved quickly. ‘The inundation was sudden and violent, burnt one canoe and carried off four more into the ocean’ according to Ellis.
Witnesses to a Southwest Rift Zone eruption of Kilauea in 1823 may have seen a
sight similar to this more recent East Rift Zone eruption. Photo from USGS/HVO
      “A nearby farmer informed them that the fissures opened about ‘11 moons’ earlier, followed by a slight earthquake ‘two moons’ before their visit. The eruption probably occurred sometime after the earthquake. The area was still too hot for the missionaries to stand for long, so they moved on toward Kilauea.
      “The next day, Aug. 1, 1823, the group arrived at Kilauea Crater. ‘After walking some distance … we … came to the edge of the great crater, where a spectacle, sublime and even appalling, presented itself before us. … Astonishment and awe for some moments rendered us mute, and, like statues, we stood fixed to the spot, with our eyes riveted on the abyss below.’
      “About 500 feet below the crater’s rim, there was a ‘black ledge’ of hardened crust extending all the way around the inside of the crater, with the floor a few hundred meters below. At the time of their visit, the floor of the crater ‘was covered with lava,’ probably an active lava lake,” HVO reports. 
      “‘It was evident that the large crater had been recently filled with liquid lava up to this black ledge, and had … emptied itself into the sea … in all probability this evacuation had caused the inundation of the Kapapala coast … about three weeks prior to our visit,’ Ellis wrote. This deduction was very astute.
      “During repeat visits to the crater over the next two years, the missionaries observed that the level of activity decreased with each visit and that the crater was filling up.
      “The missionaries had stumbled on a fundamental behavior of Kilauea volcano: the crater floor subsides and lava drains away, often fueling an eruption along one of its two rift zones, only to slowly refill before the process starts again.”
      The article describes several other occurrences where Kilauea acted in similar fashion.
      “The same sequence, but on a smaller scale, occurs at the Pu`u `O`o vent. Over the past several years, the crater floor subsided and refilled, only to subside again, coincident with an outpouring of lava from somewhere nearby. The sequence occurred three times in 2011 and, most recently, on June 27, 2014.
      “Recognizing this sequential behavior allows us some ability to forecast what volcanic activity might come next, but not when. To improve our forecasts, we continue to look for the clues to help us understand the timing of the sequence.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Hawai`i Sustainability Coordinator Jacqueline Kozak Thiel
WHILE PARTICIPATING IN A PANEL DISCUSSION at the 22nd Hawai`i Conservation Conference, Gov. Neil Abercrombie shared an update from President Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, to which the governor was appointed last fall.
      “When the President’s task force initially convened in December, the state of Hawai`i emerged as a leader by presenting a comprehensive report on our state’s approach to adaptation titled Navigating Change at the very first meeting,” Abercrombie said. “We showed up prepared and ready to provide a strong voice for Hawai`i on how best to partner with federal agencies in addressing the impacts of climate change.
      “The White House has responded with an announcement on federal investments that focus on a National Disaster Resilience Competition, grants for green infrastructure, localized data and mapping, partnerships to integrate traditional ecological knowledge, and coastal management and planning – a number of areas where Hawai`i is demonstrating leadership.”
      The Aloha State was also recognized as having the most local stakeholder engagement among the task force members. This was achieved through an online survey and a series of Resilient Hawai`i Forums hosted by the governor earlier this year, where more than one thousand citizens participated. The Abercrombie Administration incorporated the input from across the state into its recommendations for the task force.
      State Sustainability Coordinator Jacqueline Kozak Thiel represented the governor at the fourth task force meeting, held this week in Washington, DC, at the White House with a visit from President Obama. “Our proposal outlines steps to engage the next generation of leaders and communities,” she said. “One example of a priority recommendation being considered by the White House and federal partners is our plan for ‘Climate Change Corps.’ The proposal would create green jobs and service learning opportunities through community-based climate preparedness and resilience projects. Climate Change Corps members would help to restore watersheds, support food security and public health, remove invasive species, respond in disasters, and build trails and infrastructure.”
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
KA`U’S U.S. REP. TULSI GABBARD HAS CO-INTRODUCED the ACT Now for Veterans bill (H.R. 5131) to direct the Department of Veterans Affairs to reimburse non-VA medical providers who provide care to eligible veterans. “This legislation will ensure that veterans in Hawai`i and across the U.S. who are lost in the VA bureaucracy, and who have been sitting on unacceptably long waiting lists, are able to get medical care immediately,” Gabbard said.
“Hawai`i veterans need care today and shouldn’t have to wait for Congress, or the VA bureaucracy, to make the systemic changes necessary for the VA to fulfill its mission once again,” said Gabbard, a twice-deployed Army combat veteran. “Some Hawai`i veterans have been waiting eight years to see a doctor. With 1,331 Hawai`i veterans waiting to see a doctor, Hawai`i’s Veterans Health Administration leadership only requested $250,000 from the VA to provide access to non-VA physicians for these wait-listed veterans. Other states have asked for and received more than $7 million to provide this access for their veterans to receive care from private physicians and deal with this crisis.

      “Our bill will give veterans the flexibility they need to seek care from a doctor in their community immediately, with the assurance that the VA will cover the bill as a temporary solution to this urgent crisis. Our veterans deserve far better than to have their service dishonored by the VA’s bureaucratic red-tape or even blatant negligence.”

      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

KA`U HOSPITAL HOSTS THE ANNUAL PUBLIC MEETING of East Hawai`i Regional Board of Directors for Hawai`i Health Systems Corp. tomorrow at 2 p.m. Topics discussed will be specific to Ka`u and its surrounding community.
     A presentation will cover an overview of services offered at Ka`u Hospital and its rural health clinic. The floor will be opened for comments and suggestions on providing healthcare for residents of East Hawai`i.
      For more information, call Terry Larson, Administration Secretary, at 932-3103.

OCEAN VIEW EVANGELICAL COMMUNITY CHURCH hosts Ocean View Ho`olaule`a: Lu`au for God, in Jesus’ name Saturday, Aug. 16 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event includes free Hawaiian food while supplies last, different worship teams, hula, door prizes, games and prizes for children, keiki I.D. and a prayer booth. Everything is free at this alcohol and drug free event.
      For more information, call 345-5899.


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