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October 7, 2012
Puna Pono Alliance
Letting Puna be Puna

PEIS Call To Action:
Testimony Due October 9
The Big Island and our neighbor islands made a great showing at the recent Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) meetings.  We have an opportunity to submit written testimony for the PEIS before October 9.  Puna Pono Alliance, with the help of many friends in the community, have developed a letter with a long list of questions and concerns that should be addressed by the PEIS.  If many people in our community ask these questions, it will help ensure that the DOE and the State of Hawaii address them.

To submit testimony for the PEIS, please follow this link to a sample letter.

Please copy this letter into your email, add the date at the beginning of the letter, and your name, address and email at the end of the letter.  Feel free to make the letter your own and to ask more questions about issues that are important to you.
Here's how DOE describes the process:  "In 2010, DOE announced its intent to prepare a PEIS for the Hawai‘I Interisland Renewable Energy Program (HIREP): Wind (DOE/EIS-0459). In response to public scoping comments, as well as regulatory and policy developments since the scoping meetings, DOE proposes to broaden the range of energy efficiency and renewable energy activities and technologies to be analyzed in the PEIS and, accordingly, has renamed it the Hawai‘i Clean Energy PEIS. DOE’s proposal involves the development of guidance to use in future funding decisions and other actions to support Hawai‘i in achieving the goal established in the Hawai‘i Clean Energy Initiative (HCEI) to meet 70% of the State’s energy needs by 2030 through energy efficiency and renewable energy."

Here is a link to the website describing the PEIS:
Night-time Geo Drilling Noise Ban Moves Forward
Hawaii County Council Bill 292 to ban geothermal drilling from 7pm - 7am passed it's second reading 8 - 1 last Wednesday with Donald Ikeda opposing the bill.  Testimony from the community and Puna Pono Alliance was strong.  We expect the final vote at the council in two weeks.  We'll let you know when the bill is on the council agenda so you can help us by testifying in support of the bill.

Links to video of the Council sessions from OccupyHawaii are below:

puna-geothermal-drill 10

Health Study Considered By Windward Planning Commission
Bob Petricci made a presentation to the Windward Planning Commission and several members of Puna Pono Alliance and the community testified about the need for an independent health study near the PGV geothermal plant.  After the Puna Pono Alliance made their health study proposal, the mayor made his own proposal and contracted the services of a facilitator to do fact finding.  Here's a link a news story about the meeting:

Links to video of the WPC sessions from OccupyHawaii are below:

Part 1 presentation and public testimony

Part 2 commission discussion

Part 3 after executive session

Mahalo Kerri for all OccupyHawaii media.

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Hawaii-Wide Day of Action:  Opposition to the PLDC 

On Monday, October 8th citizens throughout the islands will be uniting in a day of action and solidarity to show opposition to the State of Hawaii's Public Land Development Corporation (the PLDC). The PLDC was created by the State legislature last year when Act 55 was signed into law creating a new funding arm of the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR).  Actions taken on this day will allow our voices to be heard and will demonstrate to our State elected officials and to the PLDC Board of Directors that there is broad, deep, and diverse opposition to the PLDC. 

The public's opposition is on so many levels -- from the PLDC's exempting itself from regulatory, planning, preservation, civil service, and competitive bidding requirements; to the shift in the DLNR's balance from a preservation and conservation role to one of development for money; to the incompatibility of contemplated development with low or inverse market demand; to the burdens this development places on local infrastructure; to the shutting out of our local communities by holding public meetings about proposed development only on O'ahu; to excluding our City / County governments from any requirements to involve them in the evaluation, planning, and regulatory processes; and to how the PLDC and its exemptions shows disregard and contempt toward our host culture (Kanaka Maoli and Kanaka Hawai'i) for the stewardship and public trust responsibility of Crown /  "Ceded" Lands.  We are being asked to abrogate our responsibilities to future generations of Hawaiians who must rely on us to properly steward these precious and fragile resources for them in the name of increased revenue.
Recently, public meetings were held in every county for constituent input into the draft Administrative Rules for the PLDC.  Hundreds of people turned out in each location to testify and share their mana'o, the vast majority of which was in disapproval of both the rules and of PLDC as an agency.  It appears that the numbers of people are being under-reported to the PLDC Board of Directors, as well as testimony content being filtered.  

The creation of the PLDC, its proposed rules, and public opposition are now being given a public relations spin in the wake of this widespread disapproval.  Governor Abercrombie called the public rejection of the PLDC, a “conspiratorial hysteria” (Honolulu Star Advertiser, September 13, 2012, A1).  One day after that, Mililani Trask wrote that the uproar is the result of fears that are needlessly “hysterical.” (HSA, September 12, 2012).   On September 14, Senator Malama Solomon (one of the sponsors of legislation creating the PLDC) informed the public that the Governor and the PLDC would be developing a strategic plan which clarifies the mission of the PLDC (Hawaii 24/7 ).  The problem with all of these efforts is that public objection is primarily to the law known as Act 55 which created the PLDC.  

Remediation actions such as tweaking the administrative rules, creating a nice mission statement, or publishing an engaging strategic plan are seen as cosmetic bandages applied to fatally flawed legislation.  These attempts at fixing what is wrong can easily be changed at any point in the future through non-legislative administrative processes, and still leave intact the underlying bad law.
To show our disapproval of Act 55 and the PLDC, events will be happening on this day throughout the islands. In East Hawaii a sign waving event is planned in Hilo at the DLNR offices at 19 Kawili Street from 2-4 pm. Solidarity actions in West Hawaii are also planned in Kailua-Kona along Queen Ka'ahumanu Highway from 2-4 pm, and in Kapa'au in North Hawaii from 3-4:30 across from the senior center. Communities on Kauai, Maui and Oahu are also planning actions, and a facebook event page with a complete list of all actions and events can be found here: 

A story in Honolulu Weekly about the statewide day of action can be found here:

We would also like to take this opportunity to show support and gratitude for our legislators who are acting with the best interests of the people and our future generations in mind.  We are very proud of and thank our State Representative Faye Hanohano for initially opposing the creation of the PLDC, and for sponsoring legislation during the 2012 session to repeal Act 55.  We also thank all members of our Hawai'i County Council, who have voted unanimously to approve a resolution asking the Governor and legislature to repeal Act 55 and abolish the PLDC, and the Kauai County Council for following suit, and for City/County of Honolulu and Maui County for initiating the resolution process.
Internet resources: 
Our community petition on to ask Governor Abercrombie and the legislature to repeal Act 55 and abolish the PLDC:

Please sign and share with your email list.

Some video of the public testimony about draft administrative rules here: 

Please join us on Monday, October 8th and stand in unity with our brothers, sisters, aunties and uncles across the islands who rise up in opposition to this irresponsible law. 

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Puna Pono Alliance
A Community group working for Puna and Hawai'i

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Puna Pono Alliance
RR2, Box 3311
Pahoa, Hawaii 96778

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