Letters for Thursday, June 14, 2007

• Worth the costs?

• The feds might care

• Republican leadership making difference

• Control keiki near seals

Worth the costs?

This letter is a response to The Garden Island article, “Norwegian Cruise Lines deflects complaint queries,” A1, June 11. It also is about the importance of conducting environmental impact studies.

I have been a regular user of Kalapaki Bay for more than 30 years. During that 30+ year period the water quality of the bay has declined somewhat with water clarity in the bay fluctuating as the result of fresh water runoff from both the Nawiliwili stream and the Huleia river. The more rain the dirtier the water. During dry periods the bay recovered and the water was clear.

Recently, however, the clarity of the water in the bay has remained consistently poor, even during periods of low rainfall. I was puzzled by this until a couple of weeks ago when I observed what I believe to be the cause of the bay’s perpetual turbidity. While paddling our canoe near the breakwater we had to wait for one of the cruise ships to exit the harbor. As it completed its turn toward the open ocean, it “gunned” its engines churning up huge quantities of mud from the channel floor. We paddled across the muck and watched as it spread over several hundred yards at the bay’s entrance. Some of the mud, no doubt, was carried toward the shore at Kalapaki.

With daily visits, sometimes by more than one cruise ship, it seems the bay no longer has the time to clean itself out. The long-term consequences for the bay’s reef and fish do not appear to be favorable.

These are the kinds of impacts that an Environmental Impact Study is likely to uncover. At the very least we would have baseline data to determine what impacts did occur, and we would certainly be in a better position to demand mitigating actions by polluters. We would also have been better able to address the kinds of concerns raised by the people of Niumalu over noise and noxious fumes from the cruise ships before they became a problem. Having a clearer picture of the impacts of any development would also help us look at the activity’s costs as well as its benefits. We might even discover that some proposed activities aren’t worth the cost.

Andy Bushnell


The feds might care

As far as the Hawai‘i Health Department refusing to answer questions pertaining to the blatant discharge of human waste in Nawiliwili Habor (“Norwegian Cruise Lines deflects complaint queries,” A1, June 11), I thought that the Health Department was supposed to be working toward protecting the people of Hawai‘i, not big business.

Norwegian Cruise Lines, also deflecting any questions, is normal for them, as they could care less about the residents or environment of our island. Discharging human waste in a harbor or within three miles of land is a violation of federal law.

Anyone bother to call the federal authorities?

How about HAZMAT?

The fact is, NCL should receive large fines, and be banned from operations in Kauaian waters. And food for thought, I wonder if they are doing the same discharging in other Hawaiian ports. Mainland ports of call would not stand for that for one second.

The Health Department should also be taken to task for ignoring this total disregard of maritime procedures in dumping human waste into the harbor. I wonder if guests of the Marriott, and locals as well, who swim, and surf, and play at Kalapaki Beach know that they were exposed to human feces and disease. The state of Hawai‘i does not care, NCL does not care, but I bet the feds would be interested. How about the environmental protection agency?

Denny Jackson

From the Web

Republican leadership making difference

In the 1990s when the rest of the country prospered, we in Hawai‘i suffered economically for nearly a decade.

Hawai‘i was labeled in the 1990s as one of the worst states to do business in.

Up to 2002, the state government was millions of dollars in deficit.

For years, and up to 2002, Hawai‘i government and our elected officials were plagued with corruption.

For nearly two decades our education system was broken. The majority party was happy with the status quo, thus, there were no innovative proposals to fix the system.

For decades, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs did little or nothing to place Hawaiians on Hawaiian Homelands.

Since the emergence of the Republican Party in 2002, there was a noticeable difference in our economy. Governor Linda Lingle and Lt. Governor James Aiona’s policies and initiatives sparked our economy. Basically, after the 2002 election, our Republican leaders said Hawai‘i was “Open for Business,” and then opened Hawai‘i for business.

Earlier this year, instead of having a huge deficit, our state had nearly $700 million in surplus. This is a credit to the Hawai‘i Republican leadership.

In the last four years, many of the state’s long time elected officials were indicted and convicted of corruption.

The Governor and Lt. Governor, after 2002, pushed for reform in our educational system.

The majority party fought against change. However, due to the Republican administration’s persistence in making changes and public opinion favoring changes, some good changes were finally made by the majority legislatures to the educational system. These changes were sparked by the Hawai‘i Republican leadership.

Under the Hawai‘i Republican leadership over the last four years, more Hawaiians were placed in Hawaiian Homelands than in the entire last two decades.

Yes, Republican leadership does make a good difference in the great state of Hawai‘i. Let’s continue moving forward under Republican leadership for the next 12 years.

Ron Agor


Control keiki near seals

Parents, watch your children at the beach when a monk seal is present.

One day at Salt Pond there were children throwing rocks at a resting monk seal on the shoreline of the high water mark.

Parents, these monk seals are protected and are usually taped off with yellow tape to keep people away. Supervise your children around these animals.

Howard Tolbe



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