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For Saturday, June 11, 2011

By Star-Advertiser Staff and News Services


Lingle visits injured troops abroad

Former Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle met with wounded military members and delivered a commencement address at a U.S. Department of Defense international school in Germany.

Lingle visited Landstuhl Regional Medical Center on Friday, which treats wounded U.S. soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan. The hospital near Landstuhl, Germany, is the largest military hospital outside the continental U.S.

She also spoke at the commencement for the graduating class of Kaiserslautern High School on Vogelweh Air Station, a base operated by the U.S. Air Force.

The school serves students of the Kaiserslautern Military Community, the largest community of Americans outside of the continental U.S. with about 50,000 Americans.

On Thursday, Lingle toured Ramstein Air Base and met with troops.

Lingle, a Republican, is considering a run for U.S. Senate.

Ready, set, prepare

The Natural Hazard Community Preparedness Workshop is scheduled from 1 to 4 p.m. today at Mission Memorial Auditorium, 550 S. King St. The city, the University of Hawaii Sea Grant College Program and the Sea Grant Coastal Storms Program are co-sponsoring the workshop to help people prepare for natural disasters.


Old koa forest gets protection from the state

The state is shaping a new natural area reserve out of the remnants of a koa forest high on the leeward slopes of Haleakala on Maui.

The Department of Land and Natural Resources said Wednesday it created the 1,500-acre Nakula Natural Area Reserve to protect what remains of a forest that once covered 40,000 acres from Makawao to Kaupo. It's the 20th natural area reserve in the islands.

Trampling and grazing invasive mammals like cattle, goats, pigs and deer, as well as the spread of invasive alien plants, have almost entirely wiped out the forest. Logging also destroyed large parts.

The department said the Nakula forest has great potential for recovering as koa trees might rapidly grow in areas fenced off from grazing animals.

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