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Water ruling has broader impact


POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Aug 20, 2012

~~<p>Native Hawaiians and environmentalists have won a significant court challenge of a diversion of water from a river and three streams known as &quot;the four great waters of Maui.&quot; The state Supreme Court has ordered the state water commission to require companies to restore enough water to the public without necessarily forcing them to close shop &mdash; a ruling that sends a timely, critical message to public agencies charged with stewardship of Hawaii's natural resources.</p>
<p>The lawsuit was against the state Commission on Water Resource Management and its decision that only 12.5 million gallons of water daily from the four waters be restored by Wailuku Water Co. and Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Co., leaving two of the four streams dry. That is far less than the 34.5 million gallons per day &mdash;about half the amount that had been diverted &mdash; that the commission's hearing officer had recommended in its 2010 ruling.</p>
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Native Hawaiians and environmentalists have won a significant court challenge of a diversion of water from a river and three streams known as "the four great waters of Maui." The state Supreme Court has ordered the state water commission to require companies to restore enough water to the public without necessarily forcing them to close shop — a ruling that sends a timely, critical message to public agencies charged with stewardship of Hawaii's natural resources.

The lawsuit was against the state Commission on Water Resource Management and its decision that only 12.5 million gallons of water daily from the four waters be restored by Wailuku Water Co. and Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Co., leaving two of the four streams dry. That is far less than the 34.5 million gallons per day —about half the amount that had been diverted — that the commission's hearing officer had recommended in its 2010 ruling. Login for more...



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