2014 lava survey hints at looming basic needs
  • Wednesday, November 14, 2018
  • 75°

Editorial| Insight

2014 lava survey hints at looming basic needs

  • HAWAIIAN VOLCANO OBSERVATORY / 2014

    Several small lava sources were active on the edges of a 50-foot-wide lava pond in the northeast spattere cone of Puu Oo crater at the summit of Kilauea Volcano in 2014. A survey conducted around this time sheds some light on the recent lava events.

ADVERTISING

Although more recent events have overtaken its depiction of Hawaii island’s Puna communities, a survey conducted around the time of the 2014 Pahoa lava flows does shed some light.

The “June 27th Lava Flow Community Needs Survey” was taken Nov. 20-Dec. 11 that year by Mark Kimura and Kathryn Besio, as part of a post-doctoral research project for the geography and environmental sciences faculty at the University of Hawaii-Hilo campus.

Kimura, who now works in marketing analytics for Hawaiian Airlines, said he did the work as a matter of personal interest, having friends in the affected area. The survey drew in 784 responses in an area the U.S. Census shows as having 3,809 households.

About half the survey group, perhaps lacking a local support network, said they would need permanent or long-term housing if their home was destroyed, Kimura said.

Respondents roughly mirrored the Census population distribution: About 17 percent lived in Leilani Estates, currently the hardest-hit neighborhood.

Using that data as a baseline, Kimura projected that more than 800 people could need short- or long-term shelter in 2018, though fewer have turned up in shelters.

“It looks like people were able to find family and friends,” he added. “But … there will be long-term housing issues. That’s going to be more visible in the coming months.”

Comments (0)
By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Scroll Up