Letters for Friday, February 27, 2015

• Dairy numbers don’t add up  • Kauai’s elected leaders are not leading

Dairy numbers don’t add up 

I read Sunday’s letter about the dairy and ever since have been pondering the amount of cows per lot as described. It is indeed a useful measure to think in terms of a 10,000-square-foot house lot as it’s much easier to envision than 500-plus acres.

However try as I might, I can’t get the math to add up from the paragraph which starts, “While 500 acres sounds like a lot …,” and concludes there would be seven to 17 cows on each such house lot.

As I figure, one acre is 43,560 square feet, so 500 acres = 21,780,000 square feet (The dairy is talking about 500-600 acres but we’ll stick with the 500 acre figure).

This corresponds to 2,178 house lots of 10,000 acres each.

Dividing this by the number of cows gives each cow three house lots for the starting number of 699 cows and 1.1 lot for the potential full production of 2,000 cows.

Right?

It makes quite a difference in the image.

Cynthia Welti, Kapaa

Kauai’s elected leaders are not leading

The Coco Palms and dairy farm issues currently before the public give the impression that there has been no government — or, rather, no governance — on the island of Kauai for decades.

Kauai has had more than 20 years to condemn the ruins of the wind damaged and now burned out hulk of the Coco Palms; and the same amount of time to consider its compounding of the Kuhio Highway and pedestrian traffic issues. Is it possible that the lightbulb has just gone on regarding this obvious challenge? 

The issue of dairy manure-produced nitrates in drinking water is similarly not new or unique to this island. The Polk County, Iowa, waterworks is currently suing a handful of other counties to recover the expense of nitrate removal, necessitated largely by farm runoff. The danger of nitrates was not suddenly exposed by that agricultural state; and it should not catch Kauai County by surprise. It is tempting to urge the elected and/or paid employees of Kauai government to wake up. 

However, in the face of the obvious lack of attention to issues of concern for the people of Kauai, such urgings should be focused on the voters.

Suzan Kelsey Brooks, Lihue

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