Kapolei company fined for illegal cesspool
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Monday it reached a settlement with Fileminders of Hawaii LLC and its owner, Hawaii MMGD, to pay a civil penalty of $122,000 for operating a large-capacity cesspool at their Kapolei facility in violation of the Safe Drinking Water Act.
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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Monday it reached a settlement with Fileminders of Hawaii LLC and its owner, Hawaii MMGD, to pay a civil penalty of $122,000 for operating a large-capacity cesspool at their Kapolei facility in violation of the Safe Drinking Water Act. In June the cesspool was closed, and the company installed an individual wastewater system.
Cesspools can contaminate groundwater, and large-capacity cesspools have been banned since 2005.
In May 2016 the EPA inspected the Fileminders facility, a records storage company in Campbell Industrial Park, and found one large-capacity cesspool in use. EPA regulations under the Safe Drinking Water Act required closure of all existing large-capacity cesspools by April 5, 2005.
“Closing large cesspools is essential to protecting Hawaii’s drinking water and coastal resources,” said Alexis Strauss, EPA’s acting regional administrator for the Pacific Southwest.
A large-capacity cesspool is one that serves multiple residential dwellings or a commercial facility with the capacity to serve 20 or more people per day. Cesspools collect and discharge waterborne pollutants like untreated raw sewage into the ground, where disease-causing pathogens can contaminate groundwater, streams and the ocean.
Cesspools are used more widely in Hawaii than in any other state, despite the fact that 95 percent of all drinking water in Hawaii comes from groundwater sources. Since the federal large-capacity cesspool ban took effect in 2005, more than 3,400 large-capacity cesspools have been closed statewide, many through voluntary compliance.
HECO uses drones to prep for solar farm
Hawaiian Electric Co. used drones to survey land as it prepares to build a 20-megawatt solar farm that will provide the lowest-cost solar power yet.
HECO said Monday the company used a drone to conduct a magnetic survey over land at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam as part of an environmental assessment for the facility expected to begin construction in January. HECO will build, own and operate the $67 million solar facility on land owned by the U.S. Department of the Navy. The facility will send power to the grid at 9.54 cents a kilowatt-hour.
This drone was used to detect buried metal objects such as steel drums and unexploded ordnance, HECO said.
John Lu‘uwai, HECO project developer, said the drone provided a cheaper solution in an area that would have been difficult for surveyors to assess.
“At West Loch, what would typically take several weeks or more to complete was accomplished in three days without needing to clear the heavy vegetation and rocks from the 102-acre site,” he said.
The drone was outfitted with a device used to measure variations in the magnetic field below ground. It was flown about 30 feet above ground surface.
HECO said the survey results will be used to “determine which areas will need further investigation and removal of any identified metal waste” before the utility begins to build the facility, which is expected to be in service by December 2018.
ON THE MOVE
HiGroup has announced Ryken Bohner as its new accounting manager. An accounting professional from Hawaii, Bohner was previously a director of accounting for Redhammer LLC and held various accounting management roles for Kahala Hotel & Resort and the Resort Group LLC.
HomeBridge Financial Services has announced that Jeff Barnard is the loan processor for the Oahu offices. His responsibilities include overseeing each file from pre-approval to closing. Barnard has 12 years of mortgage industry experience, including serving as a loan documentation specialist for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage for five years.
The shareholders of Ohana Pacific Bank has elected the company’s following incumbent directors, who will serve a term of three years:
>> Nicole L. Choi, partner from Locations LLC.
>> Donald C.W. Kim, chairman of the board of directors, Ohana Pacific Bank, and chairman and chief executive officer of AMKOR A&E.
>> Wayne T. Miyao, vice chairman of the board of directors, Ohana Pacific Bank.
>> Ronald T.Y. Moon, former chief justice of the Hawaii Supreme Court.