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Protests from Waianae halt Hawaii Kai dredging

Sludge hauled from the marina is being dumped in Waianae, residents there say

By Associated Press

POSTED:



A $5 million project to dredge Hawaii Kai Marina is being delayed because of concerns from the other end of the island, where Wai­anae residents complain it's another example of using one of the state's poorest communities as a dumping ground.

The project is halted for a week amid the concerns and to make sure that all necessary permits are in place, Hawaii Kai Marina Community Association President Robert Clark said Thursday.

Clark insisted the material is safe, that it's merely dirt from the mountains.

"I'd have it in my backyard, frankly, if I could," he said. "It's very fertile material."

The association spent $200,000 to analyze sludge samples at mainland laboratories, he said.

The association hired American Marine to oversee dredging of the marina, which is down to 2 feet in some places and could be dangerous for boaters, Clark said. The company subcontracted with SER Silva Equipment Rental to dispose of the sludge. Representatives from both companies couldn't be reached for comment.

City Councilwoman Kymberly Pine, who represents Wai­anae, demanded that the association remove the debris and return it to holding areas in Hawaii Kai.

"I will make sure that I do everything in my power, including exploring all legislative options, to stop this private marina from dumping its sludge in our community and ensure that this unchecked dumping never happens again," Pine said in a statement.

Environmental activist Carroll Cox was stuck in a major traffic jam Saturday, caused when an SER truck spilled sludge it was hauling westward on the H-1 freeway. Cox became suspicious because dumps were closed and the truck was headed toward Wai­anae, where there has been illegal dumping in the past.

"This is the textbook example of environmental injustice," Cox said. "One entity has the money, the power, the influence … and does something that impacts negatively on a community that's less fortunate."

State Sen. Maile Shi­ma­bu­kuro, who represents Wai­anae, said her office received complaints from homestead residents about the dumping in Wai­anae Valley. So she contacted the city, which sent an inspector.

The Department of Planning and Permitting conducted an inspection Aug. 20 which revealed that earthen material was trucked in and used as fill without a grading permit, said department spokes­man Curtis Lum. A notice of violation was issued Friday, ordering the company to stop work immediately. The citation would impose daily fines of $150 if a grading permit isn't secured by Oct. 7.

Pake Salmon of community group Ka Wai Ola o Wai­anae said residents are worried because they don't know what's in the sludge, which could end up flowing into Pokai Bay. She said she's also offended that Clark dismissed concerns and told a Hawaii News Now reporter they came out of "total ignorance."

"How I educate those people out there to know that this is the situation, I don't know," Clark told The Associated Press, "because I'm not going to take the time to do it. I haven't got the time."

He said the association doesn't control where the sludge ends up, and it wasn't deliberate "to dump it in an area where the Hawaiians are residing."

Clark added, "But there are big areas of open space there that can be used in this way."

Natalie Iwasa, a member of the Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board, said there needs to be sensitivity to the Wai­anae residents' concerns and that information about the sludge's contents should be shared with them.

"We understand what their concerns are, and we would be willing to help educate and do what we can … to help with this issue," she said.






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droid wrote:
This is a simple matter of SER Silva Equipment Rental failing to secure grading permits. Either they are too lazy or too cheap to follow the rules, so they deserve what they get.
on September 7,2013 | 04:10AM
doder wrote:
Why not use that dredged material to create another Magic Island on the Hawaii Kai end of Oahu? The creation of Magic Island from dredged coral/sand/sludge has given Ala Moana Park a lot of additional parking, more beautiful recreation area, protection of the beach sand from erosion and stronger currents, etc.
on September 7,2013 | 06:28AM
leino wrote:
Great idea. Years of work but worth it in the end. Parks are one of our most valuable assets.
on September 7,2013 | 09:55AM
bekwell wrote:
Excellent idea. Good to see someone thinking out of the box.
on September 7,2013 | 02:57PM
false wrote:
You guys are so nuts! First the filled the loko ia to make the Condo community, then that community drains its fertilizer and other yard poisons into the remains of the loko kuapa that goes out to the ocean. Never mind it was one of the largest fish ponds on the island. Now it's useless sludge pond for their rich boats and play ground. Where would they put that sludge for another Magic Island? Hanauma Bay? That's already a public disaster. Maunalua Bay? Why do volunteers work so hard to recover the bay? Oh, maybe Paiko Drive? Nuts! That you have.
on September 7,2013 | 05:07PM
Wazdat wrote:
Pine is a LOUD MOUTH. It is the contractors fault NOT the marina in HK.
on September 7,2013 | 06:42AM
mcc wrote:
Pine is protecting the west side from toxic chemicals. Who knows what is in the water, batteries, tires, shopping carts, pesticide runoff. Bob Clark is the bigmouth calling the people protesting his sludge ignorant. If the sludge is so fertile, dump it in Maunalua Bay.
on September 7,2013 | 08:06AM
Mediocrates wrote:
Pine is incensed and correctly showing some righteous indignation for the people she represents. The legal fault most certainly lies with the association and each party along the way as well.
on September 7,2013 | 09:10AM
sollie wrote:
IF THE DIRT IS FROM THE MOUNTAINS WHY DIDN'T THEY PUT IT BACK ON THE MOUNTAIN FROM WHICH IT CAME//////OH,NO ROOM, TO MUCH HIGH DOLLAR HOUSES. WHAT IS THE NAME OF THE "LABRATORY" THE SAMPLES WERE SENT TO. ALSO, WHAT KIND OF LAND PLANTS, TREES, VEGETATION CAN GROW IN SALT SOAKED SILT WITH YEARS-DECADES OF TREATMENT. THE ALA-MOANA SHOPPING CENTER WAS AQUIRED IN ALMOST THE SAME WAY. DREDGING THE ALA-WAI CANAL HAWAIIAN DREDGING NEEDED SOMEWHERE TO STORE THE MATERIAL,SO THEY ASKED THE OWNER OF THE "SWAMP" LAND TO "STORE" THE SILT AND CORAL, BUT LATER CHARGED THE OWNER A BACKFILL FEE,THE OWNER COULDN'T PAY THE FEE, SO ONE OF THE,THEN "BIG THREE",CLAIMED THE "SWAMP LAND" ,NOW KNOWN AS ALA-MOANA SHOPPING CENTER. DEVELOPERS ARE EVERYWHERE!!!!!!!!!!
on September 7,2013 | 06:52AM
Slow wrote:
Calm down. I am probably not alone in skipping all caps comments. ALOHA!!!!!
on September 7,2013 | 08:22AM
mwells0525 wrote:
The mud was deemed safe, and SER owns the land that they are dumping it on... SOOOOO whos to blame- not really anyone except maybe SER needs a grading permit which they can easily get.. NEXT
on September 7,2013 | 06:57AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
If safe so why alllllll the way down Waianae? Robin Leach voice over Hawaii Kai board chair, says so. Why he even likes it in his back yard! And isn't Maunalua Bay being invaded by alien species? The run off in fact is causing a barren underwater landscape there. Huh?
on September 7,2013 | 11:20AM
W_Williams wrote:
Why not just leave the "marina" the way it is now? Oh, I know why. The people on the "marina" need their waterfront lifestyle.
on September 7,2013 | 07:41AM
honokai wrote:
If the guy says he would be happy to have it in his yard, he should pull a permit and have it delivered.
on September 7,2013 | 07:52AM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Come on, dumping stuff from the East side to Wainae is a tradition. It flows down hill, doncha know. Pretty soon you going to tell me that Kailua and Kahal are going to have to deal with their own trash. No way.
on September 7,2013 | 07:53AM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Sorry...my "a" key get stuck again. Every time it rains.
on September 7,2013 | 07:54AM
AmbienDaze wrote:
no worries, i knew what you meant.
on September 7,2013 | 10:34AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Maneki.....it's actually your finger stuck up your "a" and not the other way around.
on September 7,2013 | 11:23AM
Slow wrote:
Robert Clark is doing an outstanding job. A supreme example of what some call huckin fowlies.
on September 7,2013 | 08:27AM
DABLACK wrote:
The Hawaii Kai people think the Leeward side is the island's dumping ground. They got away with the filthy dump by Ko Olina and think its okay to take advantage again. Just dump the silt in Hawaii Kai and leave the Leeward side alone !!
on September 7,2013 | 08:47AM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
They got away with the filthy dump by Ko Olina ...

At least we got a world class aquarium.


on September 7,2013 | 10:10AM
paniolo wrote:
Turn the trucks around and dump it in Hawaii Kai. Let them deal with THEIR sludge.
on September 7,2013 | 09:07AM
Mediocrates wrote:
outrageous environmental injustice of rich over-priviledged people taking advantage of poor disadvantaged people. the people of Hawaii Kai should be ashamed but from the ones I know they are probably just laughing in their immense mansions.
on September 7,2013 | 09:09AM
Mediocrates wrote:
I agree and I'm white. This kind of behavior gives us all a bad name. As an aside the SA's oversensitive system won't let me type h a o l e. Get over it SA.
on September 7,2013 | 09:13AM
Leewardboy wrote:
The "silt" in this situation almost certainly has pollutants in it. It at least, as Sollie already mentioned, has salt - not conducive to growing most plants. We've seen other examples of dumps in the Leeward area that resulted in harmful materials flowing into the ocean. Hope this one gets posted. I've never written anything in violation of the SA terms of service but some of my stuff never gets posted. Maybe the editors judged my writing skills to be substandard.
on September 8,2013 | 01:29AM
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