• 04 Oct 2014 /  BULLETINS, Lava Reports, news

    This is an eruption and lava flow Information Update for Saturday, October 4th at 8:15am.

    An aerial survey performed this morning shows that the flow front continues to be active and has advanced approximately 50 yards since yesterday. A narrow finger at the flow front is moving along the tree line and the burning activity with that is producing a significant amount of smoke. There is no brush fire threat at this time and the burning is limited to the edges of the flow only.

    Current flow activity does not pose an immediate threat to area communities and no evacuation is needed at this time. Area residents will be given adequate notice to safely evacuate should that be necessary.

    The Railroad Emergency Route is NOT open to the public at this time. The public is reminded that no public vehicles, persons, or activity is allowed within the emergency route until the route is opened.

    The public is also reminded that the flow is not visible and cannot be accessed from any public areas. Access to the Kaohe Homesteads subdivision will remain restricted to area residents only.

    We would like to thank everyone for your patience and understanding and your  cooperation and assistance is greatly appreciated.

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  • 03 Oct 2014 /  Uncategorized

    Our students love our school. The students came up with this idea and produced this website to ask the general public to help keep HAAS alive. As you may know, there has been a lava outbreak that has traveled over 10 miles from its source which is Pu’u O’o. Over the past thirty years, all flows have been to the South, Southeast, and Southwest. On June 27, 2014 an outbreak appeared on the the northeast side of the crater. This flow has been threatening to cover Highway 130 and cut off lower Puna from the north side of the Pahoa area. You can see the map on this site: http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/maps/uploads/image-136.jpg Right above the word Pahoa is a small triangle. That is HAAS main campus. There has been a resulting exodus of people and businesses and two schools from Pahoa area have closed (Montessori Country School and Kamehameha Early Education Program). As such, HAAS is over 100 students under our projected count. HAAS has steadily grown over the years. We average an increase of between 30 and 40 students per year. Last year, we educated 637 students in this area. This year we projected a normal growth to 680 students. Our current enrollment is at 560. Our charter system, as it exists does not have a contingency fund to help us. The DOE just spent $9M to move 17 portable classrooms to the Keaau campus to house 400 students. They took the funds from their fat Repair and Maintenance bucket. This means $500,000 or a half a million was spent on one classroom. $9M is three times the HAAS budget for 640 students. The $9M they spent does not even include equipment, supplies, electricity, food, teaching staff, and administration.
    So with nobody to turn to, the students have created this website: http://www.hopeforhaas.org/
    Please spread the word via all of your social media like facebook, twitter, linked in, etc. All we ask for is a dollar. hopefully, we will raise enough dollars to see us through this year. I want to thank you all in advance for helping our students continue their valuable education at HAAS.
    Aloha, SteveHirakami

  • 03 Oct 2014 /  Island Events, news
     HELCO president Jay Ignacio will be talking on “A Clean Energy Future for Hawaii”  at UH-Hilo, UCB Room 100, on Tuesday, October 7.
    “Under Hawaii law, the renewable portfolio standard calls for 40% of electricity sales to be from renewable resources by 2030. Hawai’i Electric Light Company aims to exceed this target adding as much renewable energy possible that is affordable, safe and reliable. Since 2008, the company has doubled the percentage of electricity supplied from renewable resources across Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii Island. To fulfill the promise of these new technologies, Hawai’i Electric Light Company works in partnership with businesses, government, with other energy providers, environmental and community groups, and their customers. This is a community challenge that only a collective community effort can meet,” Ignacio says, in a  press release by the event.
    Ignacio, a Hilo native, holds a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Hawai‘i at M?noa and is registered as a Professional Engineer in the State of Hawai‘i.
    For more information, contact:
    Dr. Ryan Perroy, Chair of the Sustainable Committee
    Assistant Professor in Geography and Environmental Science

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    Despite several attempts by staff and legal counsel of the Hawaii’s Volcano Circus (HVC) to clarify the organizational relationship between HVC and the Village Green Society (VGS), the state Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR) waged fines against both organizations on Friday. According to HVC Chairman, Graham Ellis, HVC did not erect or occupy any of the alleged structures nor is it responsible for any alleged encroachments on state land. He also clarified that all ohia used in constructing SPACE was sustainably harvested on the VGS TMK.

    Interim Director, Dena Smith, reports feeling frustrated and disappointed at the vindictive efforts by several local residents that have repetitively waged complaints against SPACE over the last several years. She states that this pattern is destructive and counterproductive to building community connection and communication. Another source of frustration, according to Smith, is the information leakage to the press before either HVC or VGS received communication from the DLNR. It took nearly two months for the DLNR initial finding report to be sent to both organizations.

    The mission statement of SPACE is “to creatively promote sustainable local community in Puna Makai.” This mission has been put into practice in recent weeks during the aftermath of Tropical Storm Iselle, when SPACE stepped in to offer assistance to local residents and neighbors by serving as a relief station; offering free ice, bathrooms, food & water distribution, and daily potluck dinners. Now with the lava threatening passage to lower Puna, SPACE is again seeking ways to serve the local community.

    The focus for this colorful community arts center is on educational programs, particularly those for children and families. Besides being the home of the renowned HICCUP Circus, SPACE is also home to Seaview School, a satellite program of the Hawaii Academy of Arts and Sciences, which serves 30+ students. A new program is being launched this week called “Sacred SPACE,” offering gatherings on Sunday morning to various local spiritual groups.

    For more information about the Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education (SPACE), please visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/HawaiiSPACE or our website at www.hawaiispace.com.


    Dena Smith, Interim Director

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  • 01 Oct 2014 /  BULLETINS, Lava Reports

    From the Governor’s Office:

    HONOLULU – Gov. Neil Abercrombie today issued an executive order that turns over 3.68 miles of the state-owned portion of Chain of Craters Road near Kalapana to Hawaii County.

    The executive order states that the land is “hereby turned over to the County of Hawaii, in fee simple, for use as a county highway, and the County of Hawaii shall hereafter be responsible for its repair and maintenance as a county highway.”

    On Sept. 15, Gov. Abercrombie signed a supplemental emergency proclamation to include the repair, restorations, rebuilding, or reestablishment of Chain of Craters Road, for use as an alternate emergency route should the June 27th lava flow cross Highway 130 near Pahoa and isolate communities in lower Puna from the rest of Hawaii County. That proclamation, a supplement to the original emergency proclamation signed on Sept. 5, also extended the disaster emergency relief period through Dec. 1, 2014.

    The original proclamation suspended certain laws as needed for emergency purposes, including state restrictions on reestablishing abandoned roads that may be used should lava cross Highway 130. It also activated the Major Disaster Fund set aside by the state Legislature for disaster relief and facilitates access to emergency resources at the state and federal levels.

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  • 01 Oct 2014 /  Uncategorized

    For many of us, Hurricane Iselle should have been a wake-up call, as we learned how dependent we are on outside inputs. While it is fresh in our minds, this is the time to see what products and ideas are available so that we and our families can survive the next disaster in some degree of comfort.

    With this in mind, Malama O Puna is planning its popular annual Expo for Saturday, October 11 at the Leilani Estates community facility on Moku Street. The event will run from 11 am to 3 pm. Previous participants are welcome to return; there are openings for new exhibitors and vendors to promote products and services and provide information, techniques and inspiration so we can become more sustainable and resistant to forces beyond our control.

    All types of sustainability topics are welcome to be featured:

    Food: gardening, agriculture, food processing (“putting up”).  Water: potable, grey water, waste water, catchment systems. Housing: building materials, designs, special features, building practices.  Energy: solar and wind, alternate energy appliances. Jobs: green employment, right livelihood.  Health: herbal & traditional medicine, nutrition, exercise.  Transportation: electric cars, bicycles, horses, shank’s mare. Solid Waste: reducing, reusing, recycling how tos and projects and any other relevant topic….

    Booth spaces are 10 x 10, with more space available if needed. Electricity is available for exhibits. The facility has ample parking, a playground, a large lawn and restrooms. Commercial vendors fee is $25; nonprofits $10. Individuals who are sharing ideas and projects are free. To apply: malamaopuna@yahoo.com

    malama pono,


  • 01 Oct 2014 /  BULLETINS, Lava Reports, news

    From Hawaii Volcano Observatory:

    Kilauea continued to erupt at its summit and within the East Rift Zone, and gas emissions remained elevated. Inflationary ground tilt and a rise in lava level were recorded at the summit over the past day. At the middle East Rift Zone, the leading edge of the June 27th lava flow remains stalled, although scattered breakouts of lava are present near the lava flow front and at other places between the flow front and Pu`u `O`o

    June 27th Lava Flow Observations: The June 27th lava flow remains active. Based on observations from HVO webcams, there have been no significant changes to the flow front since yesterday. On Monday breakouts of lava were observed where the flow first enters the crack system about 8 km (5 mi) behind the stalled front, and where it exits the crack system about 3 km (2 mi) back from the front. At the leading edge of the flow, two lobes of weak surface activity were observed at 125 m (410 ft) and 580 m (1900 ft) behind the front. Both lobes were creeping northeast around the north side of the existing flow. An HVO overflight is scheduled this morning.


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  • 29 Sep 2014 /  BULLETINS, Lava Reports, news

    From  Hawaii Volcano Observatory

    June 27th Lava Flow Observations: A Civil Defense overflight on Monday morning found that the leading edge of the June 27th lava flow had not advanced in the past 24 hours, although it was active along its northern margin. The flow lobe upslope and north of the leading edge advanced by 90 m (100 yards) since it was observed on Sunday morning. HVO plans to conduct an overflight of the entire June 27th lava flow field later on Monday.

    Pu`u  O`o Observations: There was no net change in ground tilt at Pu?u ???? over the past day. Glow was visible overnight above several outgassing openings in the crater floor. The most recent sulfur-dioxide emission-rate measurement for the East Rift Zone was 550 tonnes per day (from all sources) on September 25, 2014. Seismic tremor is low and constant.

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  • 26 Sep 2014 /  Uncategorized

    Yesterday, after an afternoon of pedaling around sweltering Hilo on various errands, I pulled into the stop across from the County Building to catch my ride home. I spent a half-hour waiting at the stop, which was occupied only by myself and two individuals who’d been coping with the heat with the aid of copious amounts of beer. One of them was still swigging from a can at the stop–which, btw, is illegal, but although we were within a hundred yards from the courthouse, there weren’t any cops around.
    After asking me if I had any pot and getting a negative answer, the imbiber  went back to talking with his crony, and began ranting about how Pele was coming down to punish “da haoles, ’cause dey got no respect. Always dumping trash around. Respect is EVERYTING. You no respect, I going bus’ you up.” Oddly enough, he exempted his companion, who was obviously of Caucasian ancestry: “You are not a haole, man! You served your country!”
    I glanced at my bike, which was loaded with road-kill clothing I’d picked up along the highway on my way down from Volcano–I launder it and give it to charity, if it’s salvageable–and firmly told myself, in my best internal Captain Picard voice, “Do NOT engage.”
    The two drunks finally boarded the Keaukaha bus, leaving  blessed silence.
    Folks, so far, in addition to littering haoles, I’ve heard HELCO, PGV, GM papaya, Longs Drugs, and various Pahoa developers all blamed for Madame Pele’s wrath. I vividly remember, back when Kalapana was going under, Haunani-Kay Trask going on a national TV show and saying that Pele was angry because of geothermal development. But then, instead of burning out PGV, Pele inundated Kalapana and Kaimu and the homes of a lot of Kanaka Maoli families (many of whom, btw,were still waiting for Hawaiian Homelands to finish a promised new subdivision for them, last time I checked).  This time, so far, she’s mainly taken out native forests.
    If Pele exists outside our own minds, then she was here long before humans, and there’s precious little evidence that she takes any particular interest in us at all (with the possible exception, perhaps, of her forbearance from taking Uncle Robert’s compound). She just needs someplace to put some lava.
    Not that Pele is the only god whose name gets taken in vain this way. Throughout history, humans have used natural phenomena as supernatural  signs to grind their axes–often literally–against various opponents. Christianity, if anything, has been especially notorious in this regard; the hate-mongers at Westboro Baptist Church are only the latest in a long line of Ku Klux Klanners, witch hunters, Papal inquisitors and crusaders stretching all the way back to Constantine, who claimed he saw a sign in the heavens that he should smite his enemies in the name of Jesus. But it’s not just a Christian problem. The whole notion of karma, for instance, is that if something bad happens to you, you deserve it–if not for something you’ve done, then for something you did back when you were someone else. That notion can be spiritually consoling, but it also provides a theological foundation for caste privilege and institutionalized poverty.
    It’s time we outgrew this impulse. Using disasters to invoke divine endorsement for whatever cause you’re into is both disrespectful of the divine and, more importantly, disrespectful to the actual victims of disaster. I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep repeating it: IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU. IT’S NOT ABOUT ANYBODY YOU DISLIKE.
    –Alan McNarie

  • 26 Sep 2014 /  BULLETINS, Hurricane, Lava Reports, news

    Puna residents affected by Tropical Storm Iselle or the lava flow can obtain free legal help from volunteer attorneys at Kea`au High School of Mountain View Gym on Saturday, Sept. 27 from 20 p.m. to 2 p.m., in an event sponsored by the Hawaii Legal Aid Society, the Hawaii State Bar Association and the Hawaii County Bar Association.

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  • 25 Sep 2014 /  Lava Reports, news

    From Pattie Hickey Rechtman:

    There will be a distribution of Pallets on Sunday from 9-4 at Big Island Brokers at 15-3039 Pahoa Village Rd, P?hoa, HI 96778

    The organizers are passing out 150 Free pallets (first come first served) to people preparing to relocate or pack belongings. The staff at the distribution will also provide additional information on their future plans to assist with moving and storing the pallets (planning still underway). Shrink wrap and limited moving assistance for pallets are part of the future plans. This is a good opportunity to get some boxes set aside for storing things while people are in transition.

    This is the first step in an ongoing assistance mission put together by the following organizations and businesses

    Boy Scouts Troop 95
    Big Island Brokers
    ACR Water
    Christ Lutheran Church
    Kona Trans
    Aloha Pallets

    Time 2-4
    Date Sunday, September 28
    15-3039 Pahoa Village Rd, P?hoa, HI 96778 (Big Island Brokers)

    As always, please share.

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  • 25 Sep 2014 /  Uncategorized

    Aloha Tiffany,

    Glad to see you made the run-off.

    I intended to vote for you, but was blocked by the County Clerk’s Office.

    The Notice of Voter Registration and Address Confirmation Card arrived stating “Your Polling Place Is: Permanent Absentee Mail Voter, A Ballot Will Be Mailed.” None came!

    After speaking with less than 20 people, five of us had not received our ballots. One is a mistake. Two a coincidence. Three raises questions.  Five is intentional!!

    Upon speaking of this matter with a state senator, the reply was “at least you can vote in the General Election.”

    My reply was “there are people I wished to vote for in the (Primary) Election.”  At this point, I don’t have any hope of being allowed to vote.

    Can you do more than a state senator in addressing this voter tampering issue?


    Don P. Clay

  • 25 Sep 2014 /  BULLETINS, news

    Ed. Note: The lava flow, as of this morning, has changed direction with outbreaks uphill, but it has not stopped.  Such changes are to be expected, but that doesn’t mean people shouldn’t continue evacuation preparations. 

    The pet evacuation advice below  is from a pamphlet by geologist Asta Miklius, who helped with animal rescue during the Kalapana flows.  “Pauses in advancement of the flow front are not uncommon,” says Miklius.  “During the overun of Kalapana in 1990, the flow paused 11 times. Many residents stopped their evacuation preparations, hoping their home would be spared; when they needed to evacuate, some people abandoned their pets, imagining that they could survive on their own.  Others could not capture their frightened animals at the last minute.”


    Animals can’t survive a lava flow!
    Advancing lava is a terrifying situation. Panicked animals do not know which way to run to safety and are likely to either try to cross burning hot lava or hide under their house until it goes up in flames.

    Plan ahead to keep your pets safe
    Arrange for family or friends to take your pets in if you can’t take them with you to your refuge. If no one can help, call kennels and animal shelters, or ask for assistance from helppuna.com or the Humane Society.
    Contain your pets long before you need to take them to their refuge. Even the tamest of animals can become agitated and hard to catch in tense circumstances.
    Relocate your pets before you are told that you need to evacuate. The order to evacuate can come with as little as 24 hours advance notice of the arrival of lava to your area. The time to act is several days to a week before the lava is expected to reach your community.
    Have leashes and/or carriers ready. If you need carriers, check with the Humane Society or helppuna.com. Prepare containers with their food, medicines and instructions. Vaccination records will be important if taking them to kennels or shelters.
    Consider microchipping your pet. This is the best way to reunite with a pet in case you become separated. Call your veterinarian or the Humane Society for this quick and painless procedure. The Humane Society is microchipping for only $8 until at least September 27. Remember to keep your contact information current.

    Raku with bandages

    Raku was rescued after he severely burned his paws trying to cross hot lava as it surrounded his home in Kalapana in 1990. He went on to live a long life, but countless other animals perished in Kalapana, engulfed in flames. Photo by Christina Heliker

    Where to turn for help
    • Hawai`i Island Humane Society: 966-5458
    • Search http://www.helppuna.com for o?ers of assistance, and/or post your request.
    • Hui Pono Holoholona cat shelter: http://www.hphhawaii.org, 968-8279.
    • Rainbow Friends Animal Sanctuary for special needs pets: 982-5110, rainbowfriends.org.

    If you can help
    • O?er to foster animals: call the Humane Society and post on helppuna.com.
    • Donate time or funds to the organizations listed above.

    Stay informed
    • Listen to the radio for Civil Defense advisories, call 935-0031 or 935-3311 (after hours), or check their website
    • USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory: http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov or 967-8862.


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  • 25 Sep 2014 /  news, Uncategorized

    Trust those Nigerian scammers to exploit a crisis two oceans away.

    Hawai`i Island police are warning the public about a rental house scam. Those responding to Craigslist ad are told that the “landlord” is out of the country, and that the prospective renter must send a money order deposit to a Nigerian address before receiving the keys.

    “Police advise the public not to make arrangements to rent property without confirming that the person offering the property for rent is the owner or authorized rental agent,” says the department press release.
    –Alan McNarie

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  • 24 Sep 2014 /  BULLETINS, Lava Reports, news

    From Hawaii Volcano Observatory’s Sept. 24 Report:

    A Civil Defense overflight this morning found no change at the front of the June 27th lava flow. Surface lava, however, remains active several hundred meters (yards) upslope, where a breakout was advancing into forest along the north edge of the flow. This breakout advanced another 90 meters (100 yards) toward the northeast since yesterday morning and was moving in a northeasterly direction.

    Breakouts also remain active closer to Pu?u ????, roughly midway along the length of the June 27th flow. None of these breakouts by itself has been very vigorous, but together they compose a significant portion of the total flow volume. Some of these breakouts are also producing smoke plumes as they creep into the forest along both the north and south edges of the flow.

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  • 23 Sep 2014 /  BULLETINS, Lava Reports, news

    A Civil Defense overflight this morning confirmed little to no change at the front of the June 27th lava flow. Surface lava, however, remains active several hundred meters (yards) upslope, where a breakout was advancing into forest along the north edge of the flow. This breakout advanced about 100 m (110 yards) since yesterday morning and was moving in a northeasterly direction.

    Breakouts also remain active closer to Pu`u `O`o, roughly midway along the length of the June 27th flow. None of these breakouts by itself has been very vigorous, but together they compose a significant portion of the total flow volume. Some of these breakouts are also producing smoke plumes as they creep into the forest along both the north and south edges of the flow.

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