> Mar 22, 2015 - US agency: Keep threatened status for turtles
> Jan 26, 2015 - Coalition gains ruling in injection wells lawsuit
> Jan 26, 2015 - HWF joins opposition to governor's nominee
> Nov 24, 2014 - Vessel lost in tsunami returned to Japan
> Sept-Oct 2014 - Turtle Tracks
> July 29, 2014 - HWF begins keiki marine debris program
> July 17, 2014 - Fencing meant to protect dunes and turtles
> June 4, 2014 - Federal Court rules against Maui County
> May 30, 2014 - Dawn Patrol: Sea Turtle Nesting Season
> Jan 17, 2014 - Hawaii Wildlife Fund partners with Bluecology
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Good news for green sea turtles
U.S. agency: Keep threatened status for turtles
MAUI, HAWAII - March 22, 2015
- Federal wildlife officials propose keeping Hawaii's green sea
turtles' threatened status under the Endangered Species Act,
meaning it would continue to be illegal to kill or hunt them.
Hawaii has a population of fewer than 4,000 nesting sea turtles,
nearly all of which nest on a low-lying island in the French
Frigate Shoals in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, officials
Friday's announcement from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service comes
approximately three years after the Association of Hawaiian Civic
Clubs petitioned the government to study whether Hawaii's green sea
turtles might have recovered to the point where they no longer need
But Hawaii's turtles are vulnerable to disease, rising sea levels
and other threats, said Patrick Opay, the endangered species branch
chief of NOAA's Fisheries Pacific Islands Regional Office.
[Part of article removed here for brevity]
Hannah Bernard, president and co-founder of Hawaii Wildlife
Fund, said federal officials propose reclassifying sea turtles into
11 distinct population segments, since turtles in the same patch of
ocean - the Hawaiian archipelago, for instance, share a genetic
heritage and are isolated from other groups by vast expanses of
In Hawaii, sea turtles forage among the main islands, but nest in
the northwestern islands, she said.
"They're true kamaaina. They're keiki o ka aina," Bernard said.
The turtles remain in their region and don't migrate long
distances, she said.
The turtles' designation as a distinct population, with the help of
DNA testing, allows for special wildlife management, she said. For
example, knowing the particulars about a specific population area
helps wildlife officials better manage and protect the species.
"We're more focused on our specific populations," she said.
If there were, for instance, a petition to take a certain number of
turtles for subsistence consumption or for a cultural reason,
managers could look at the numbers and see if that would work.
"It protects this particular population from being over-harvested,"
Bernard said. "It's a tool that allows a regional level of
In their announcement, federal officials said that "identifying
distinct population segments across the green sea turtle's range
would provide the flexibility necessary to help individual
populations based on localized threats. NOAA and our partners
continue to study green sea turtles to ensure that our conservation
and management decisions are driven by the best possible science."
Read entire article at MauiNews.com
Coalition gains ruling in injection wells lawsuit
New ruling opens Maui County up to civil penalties
MAUI, HAWAII - Jan 26, 2015 -
A federal judge effectively ruled Friday that all four injection wells at the Lahaina wastewater facility are "illegal" and in violation of the Clean Water Act,
leaving the county open to tens of thousands of dollars a day in civil
penalties, a lawyer for a group suing the county over the wells said.
"Any use of the Lahaina facility is illegal" until the county obtains a Clean Water Act permit, said David Henkin of Earthjustice, who represents a coalition of groups in court, on Monday.
The lawsuit, filed in April 2012, contends that wastewater from the injection wells is making its way to the ocean, endangering the public, contributing to algal growth and harming coral reefs.
Four Maui community groups - Hawaii Wildlife Fund, Surfrider Foundation, West Maui Preservation Association and Sierra Club
Maui Group - filed the lawsuit to force the county to secure a
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit, part of
the Clean Water Act, which would set limits on the pollutants that
can be discharged from the wells.
Read entire article at MauiNews.com
Video: Hannah Bernard speaks out on court case
HWF joins opposition to governor's nominee
Jan 26, 2015 -
When Governor David Ige nominated real estate developer Carleton Ching to head the Department of Land and Natural Resources
on January 23, Hawaii Wildlife Fund joined a broad coalition of groups that opposed the nomination.
An anti-Ching online petition
more than 5,000 signatures.
> Sign the petition
Gov. Ige justified his selection of Ching, saying, "Stewardship of Hawaii's unique resources is one of the most critical tasks of
State government, and Carleton Ching has the heart, knowledge and skills to lead the Department of Land and Natural Resources."
account on LinkedIn lists his development skills
as "Marketing, real estate, first time home buyers,
investment properties, residential homes, public relations and budgets."
It makes no mention of any skills related to public service, land management or conservation practices — an omission that
more than 18 organizations latched onto in the
joint statement they released
this week, blasting the nomination stating that Ching "has no
demonstrated expertise in managing the cultural and natural
resources that fall under the department's purview."
The statement was endorsed by Sierra Club, The Outdoor Circle, Conservation Council for Hawaii, KAHEA:
The Hawaiian-Environmental Alliance, Hawaii's Thousand Friends, Life of the Land, Friends of Lana'i, Progressive Democrats of Hawaii, Earthjustice, Defend O'ahu Coalition, Surfrider Foundation,
Hawaii Wildlife Fund, Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action, Hui Ho'omalu I Ka
'Aina, Kupa'a No Lani, LOST FISH Coalition, MANA (Movement for
Aloha No Ka 'Aina), Maui Tomorrow, Puna Pono Alliance, Wailua-Kapa'a Neighborhood Association, West Maui Preservation Association, and
Big Island Chronicle: KaChing!
The Garden Island: Kauai groups oppose DLNR nominee
West Hawaii Today: Groups oppose Ige’s nominee
HWF ends its 2014 marine debris season
Dec7, 2014 - HAWAII ISLAND - On
Friday, Hawaii Wildlife Fund ended its 2014 marine debris season
loading net and line into a
container for shipment to Honolulu. The HWF team loaded about 4.5 tons of net into a 40' trailer provided by
Matson Navigation's Ka Ipu 'Aina program.
Megan Lamson, Marine Debris Project Coordinator for HWF, said "Most of the net and line was recovered
from the southeast Ka'u coast." The container will be shipped to O'ahu, where Schnitzer Steel will chop it into pieces and then it will be burned at
the Covanta H-Power plant.
This Nets-to-Energy partnership was arranged by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Marine
Debris Program to keep the material out of the landfill and create electricity with it.
Since 2005, HWF's tally for these net and line shipments is about 75 tons.
Read article online at Damon Tucker
Vessel lost in tsunami returned to Japan
Nov 24, 2014 - JOHNSON ATOLL, HI - This article in the
Honolulu Star-Advertiser tells
how a Japanese man was reunited with his personal watercraft that he lost in the tsunami that hit Japan in 2011.
Three years later, a volunteer found it washed up
on Johnston Atoll, a tiny island some 800 miles southwest of Hawaii.
HWF's Hawaii Island Marine Debris Removal Project Coordinator who met the
owner of the vessel at a tsunami marine debris symposium in Japan, was interviewed for the
Read article (PDF)
Sept-Oct 2014 - MAUI, HI - Beneath the starlight, the sand begins to boil with life. A tiny head emerges, followed by a flipper. Soon turtle hatchlings
- each no bigger than a toddler’s hand - swarm the beach, heroically crawling toward the sea.
Since 1996, Hawaii Wildlife Fund volunteers have spent sleepless nights patrolling Maui beaches,
anticipating this magical moment. Two sea-turtle species nest here: honu, the green turtle snorkelers often see, and honu'ea, the endangered Hawaiian hawksbill. While most honu nest in the remote reaches of the archipelago, honu'ea nest exclusively in the main Hawaiian Islands, primarily on the Big Island. With fewer than 100 nesting hawksbills statewide, the success of each nest is crucial for the survival of the species.
Cheryl King, HWF's vice president and research director, is Maui's sea turtle expert
--and midwife of sorts. She has closely monitored honu'ea and honu since 2000.
Finding these elusive reptiles is no easy feat, she says. "We've identified
eight nesting females on Maui, which is as much of an accomplishment as it is a
> Read article in Maui No Ka 'Oi magazine
HWF begins keiki marine debris program
July 29, 2014 - MAUI, HI -
West Hawaii Today
Hawaii Wildlife Fund will begin its Marine Debris Keiki Education & Outreach program on Hawaii
Island this fall.
The program will bring two marine science mentors into 20 elementary schools to introduce topics such as ocean circulation,
marine ecology and human impacts, including marine debris. Mentors will work with teachers to coordinate relevant student activities that
meet the math and science benchmarks and Common Core standards for the state Department
of Education for each grade level. These in-class
lectures will conclude with student presentations of potential solutions to reduce marine debris in Hawaii and elsewhere throughout the
The program will culminate with a family beach cleanup day at island marine debris hubs including Kamilo Point in Ka'u,
Pololu in North Kohala, Kanekanaka Point in South Kohala, Cape Kumukahi in Puna, Kaipalaoa in Hilo and Ooma in Kona.The program began with
financial support from a Hawaii Wildlife Fund T-shirt fundraiser and will now be sponsored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration Marine Debris Program.
For more information about this marine debris prevention program or to sign up a classroom,
contact Catherine at firstname.lastname@example.org; and for more information about volunteering for its next Ka‘u coastal cleanup event,
contact Megan at email@example.com or 769-7629. Find additional resources and details about HWF’s ongoing conservation
projects online at wildhawaii.org.
> Read article in West Hawaii Today
Fencing meant to protect dunes and turtles
HWF's Hawksbill Sea Turtle Recovery Project protects turtles
July 17, 2014 - MAUI, HI -
Kealia Pond National Wildlife
Area Park Ranger Courtney Brown (right) and
Cheryl King, vice president and Maui
research coordinator for
Hawaii Wildlife Fund,
bolt a section of fencing together along North Kihei Road on Tuesday morning.
The fence made from recycled plastic is designed to keep nesting sea turtles from
cresting the dunes and stepping into traffic. In separate incidents in the 1990s, a pair of endangered hawksbill turtles were killed when struck by cars. It is
estimated that there are fewer than 100 adult female hawksbills that nest in Hawaii. King said the fencing is also a way to protect the dunes, which see a
lot of activity being so close to both the road and the beach. The project also involves removing the old wood and wire sand fencing that formerly protected
the turtles and fragile dunes.
> Read article in the Maui News
Federal Court rules against Maui County
County subject to penalties for violation of Clean Water Act
June 2, 2014 - HONOLULU, HI
On Friday, May 30,
the federal district court in Honolulu ruled
that Maui County is violating the Clean Water Act by using injection wells to illegally discharge wastewater from a water treatment facility.
The court concluded that most of the three to five million gallons of wastewater the
County’s Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility dumps
into the wells each day flows through groundwater and emerges offshore of popular Kahekili Beach Park in West Maui, where the wastewater-laden
groundwater "substantially affects the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of the ocean water."
The court will impose civil penalties for the County’s violations following a hearing set for March 17, 2015.
In 2012, four Hawaii community groups - Hawaii Wildlife Fund, Surfrider Foundation, West Maui Preservation Association, and Sierra Club-Maui
Group - filed suit under the federal Clean Water Act to stop Maui County from discharging wastewater into the ocean from its Lahaina treatment
plant without a permit. Their lawsuit followed years of unsuccessful efforts to resolve the issue out of court.
> Read Press Release
Dawn Patrol: Sea Turtle Nesting Season
County subject to penalties for violation of Clean Water Act
May 30, 2014 - MAUI, HI - Wildlife officials are asking the public to be mindful of Hawksbill and
green sea turtles as they begin their 2014 nesting season along Maui beaches next month.
The public is advised to stay at least 30 feet away from nesting turtles and watch quietly, as they are easily disturbed.
Officials from the US Fish and Wildlife Service say the success of their nests is crucial for the survival of these threatened and endangered species.
In addition to keeping a safe distance, wildlife officials ask the public to immediately report sightings of nesting activity, fresh turtle tracks, nest
hatchlings, or turtles in trouble by contacting one of the following individuals:
> Read Entire Article online at MauiNow.com
- Skippy Hau, Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources: (808) 243-5294
- Courtney Brown, US Fish and Wildlife Service: (808) 268-6316, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Cheryl King, Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund: (808) 385-5464, email@example.com
Hawaii Wildlife Fund partners with Bluecology
New partnership expands HWF's volunteer, outreach opportunities
January 17, 2014 - MAUI, HI -
Hawaii Wildlife Fund has formed a new partnership with a
California-based marine nonprofit organization
specializes in eco-travel and volunteer efforts. Working with Bluecology, HWF
will offer new student field programs and volunteer
vacations for adults on Maui. Through education,
community service and outreach, the organizations will work together to
further the cause of protection of Hawaii's threatened species and
"Hawaii Wildlife Fund depends on volunteers to help its core
team conduct our native
wildlife monitoring and habitat restoration projects," said
Hawaii Wildlife Fund president
Hannah Bernard, adding
with Bluecology will allow Hawaii Wildlife Fund to tap into a larger pool of volunteers and
thus expand the research we are doing. This is a great opportunity for people who want to give back while
having fun on vacation."
HWF has conducted conservation programs and projects on
Maui and the island of Hawaii since 1996. Actively engaging local
communities, HWF works to protect Hawaii's fragile marine ecosystem and
wildlife through research, education and advocacy.
Based in California, Bluecology's senior staff has a combined 50 years of experience
establishing community-based conservation and marine protected areas. They assist communities
in Micronesia, Central and South America by providing experts and trained volunteers to help develop and
implement a variety of conservation programs. The new partnership with HWF
will expand Bluecology's reach to Hawaii.
Volunteerism is core to both organizations. The partnership expands the
ways that individuals can become hands-on active participants in
marine conservation. For those who do not wish to or are unable to
take an active role in conservation efforts, they can help spread the word
through social media. Also support through donations is always welcome.
> Donate to HWF
> Volunteer with HWF
> Learn more about Bluecology
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