Bill 129 adds a new article to the Hawaii County Code relating to hydraulic fracturing policy.
Among those to testify in council members’ Agriculture, Water and Energy Sustainability Committee Tuesday, Sept 17:
Jon Olson — speaking of the geologic structure … ‘being volcanic and being an island leaves us particularly vulnerable to damage to our freshwater resource…’ He cannot speak necessarily to the issues around our entire island… He can speak to some of dangers for Puna where this is going to occur… He is concerned that fluids will leak into entire aquifer…
Hanalei “Harry” Fergostrom — He supports a ban against franking… another concern, along with those raised by Olson… ‘what ability does the Council have to stop it’… He has seen this County go through some really good resolutions… And he has seen them flop on the side because the State says has it has a ‘greater responsibility’… ‘I am concerned… if you don’t have that ability to protect my interest… where do I go? Home rule is a big issue’… if we’re not going to implement and see it go through… ‘we’re an island… we have to understand home rule… you have a duty to protect us on this island…’
‘I appreciate geology… but home rule is a big one…’
A woman in Kona says she is suffering from organic phosphate poisoning… we do not want to see any more poisoning, she says.
She feels, on these meetings, those council members who choose not to be present — if they are not present for a certain period of time, they should be disallowed from voting on the issue at hand… (Dennis “Fresh” Onishi is not present at the committee meeting when the woman says this)
Another testifier speaks of the ‘juxtaposition of big money and interest’… with ‘no concern for citizenry’.. the people who live on this island… no respect for clean water… ‘kinda like the GMOs…’
Cory Harden says she supports Bill 129 to ban franking… ‘if we ban franking and that turns out to be a mistake, we can lift the ban,’ she says… ‘if we allow franking, and that turns out to be a mistake, we might lose our island’… We may contaminate and deplete our water resources… It may be costly or difficult or impossible to find out who is at fault… sometimes companies dissolve… many of them do… and residents are left to clean up… ‘Some people say, we do not need to ban franking, we have regulatory agencies, and we all know how geothermal is going…’
Abercrombie has indicated geothermal is something he will pursue, Harden notes.
She makes reference to cable between Oahu and Hawaii Island and corporation seeking “site control” …
Dave Kaiser notes that, if you’ve been watching news, online or mainstream, you have seen towns in West Texas dehydrated out of existence… franking is a water intensive practice, he says… dries everything out… ‘It’s just incredible. So many people are against it, yet industry wants to cram it down our throats.’ Kaiser is among many who are wearing “Save Pohoiki” shirts.
Shante Brown, testifying from Kona, supports Bill 129. She lists 12 issues with geothermal — she is concerned about the cable proposal, the potential for disaster equivalent to Fukushima, that vogue, already an islandwide problem, could be worse. She is concerned about turning residential areas into an industrial area, the overuse and pollution of our precious water, an estimated 2 million pounds of water being used in three years, endangering habitat. ‘Moving energy is not quiet,’ she says. Brown is concerned about decreased quiet and the effects on nature-based tourism…She notes there have been negative impacts with the existing geothermal in Puna… There is ‘no consideration of people,’ she says.… There are gas sensors to determine if toxicity too high… but they are high on the ground and should be closer to humans and animals, she notes.
Shannon Rudolph, speaking from Kona, reiterates what others have said… Abercrombie was relentles