Letters for March 25, 2015

• Pros and cons of dairy farm • Studies of turtle habitat needed • Traffic, parking problems mar beautiful island • 

Pros and cons of dairy farm

“To have or not to have … that is the question!”

The pros and cons about having a dairy on Kauai has pitted the proponents and opponents at a fever pitch, so let’s have some clear answers on the following: 1) Are there environmental hazards with respect to the integrity of our finite resources (soil, water, air) which can result?

2) If so, who is going to be responsible for the clean up?

3) If we need a dairy, no matter what, where is the best place to put one?

4) Is it crucially necessary for us to have a dairy on island?

We can squawk and scream all we want, but the bottom line is this: “The land is chief. If we take care of the land, the land will take care of us.”

That’s the “pono” thing to do.

Jose Bulatao, Jr.

Kekaha

Studies of turtle habitat needed

TGI coverage of the downlisting of Main Hawaiian Islands green turtles as threatened included a good quote from Terry Lilley, regarding downlisting as the correct and desirable management outcome of rebuilding populations.

Endangered Species Act considerations are an incredibly lengthy process in line with natural population dynamics. As a sea turtle ecologist for 36 years (and part-time resident of Kauai), my lab has participated in the science and evaluation of their populations. In all oceans, nests have been counted for decades, inadvertent bycatch has been vastly downsized in fisheries, and we have a much better understanding of sea turtle migration, populations and life histories.

But what is needed now are scientific studies addressing the quality of changing sea turtle habitats and forage sources, their impacts on turtle health, and comprehensive oceanographic analyses to correctly predict outcomes of climate change.

Ecosystem studies are overdue, especially here in the MHI, where green turtle numbers are increasing, but outstanding questions include whether forage and habitat quality have declined. In their request for public comments, ecosystem studies of green turtles in the MHI would be an excellent recommendation to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Fish and Wildlife Service.

Molly Lutcavage, Ph.D.

Gloucester, Massachusetts

Traffic, parking problems mar beautiful island

We are vacationing from the Mainland and are reading your newspaper daily in order to get the community flavor of this beautiful island. We used to travel here frequently. The paper’s coverage and columns are great. Congratulations!

As for our humble opinion: We were shocked to see the traffic jams in the Kapaa area. We know this is an issue for both locals and visitors alike, but I think if a viable alternative is not found soon, tourist money is going to go elsewhere. We have some ideas we could share with the county officials if they would like to meet with us. We live in a high-tourist area in California and we believe our county has done an excellent job in solving some of the same issues.

Also, the infrastructure of the Hanalei beach below Na Pali is completely undoable. We’ve looked forward for a long time to swim there and can’t. No parking, too many crowds on the road. Tonight, a waitperson told us about a shuttle but we can’t find any information about that.

We wish only the best for this beautiful island and hope you can work outside the box toward some solutions. We love you all!

Jane Parks-McKay and Tim McKay

Santa Cruz

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