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In celebration of Arbor Day in Hawaii on November 4, the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) invites native plant enthusiasts to plant sales and giveaways happening across the state this weekend. DOFAW plant nurseries on Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Maui, and Hawaiʻi island will be offering a variety of native plants to encourage their use in home gardening and landscaping.

The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), O‘ahu Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) and the Moanalua Gardens Foundation (MGF), in conjunction with Community Planning & Engineering, Inc. (CPE) have begun road repairs to the Kamananui Valley Road in Moanalua Valley. Kamananui Valley Road and the popular Kulana‘ahane hiking trail will remain open during regular trail hours; however, some phases of the project will require periodic, full-valley closures.

BLNR Chair Suzanne Case issued the following statement today about protesters at Friday’s Land Board meeting calling for Board Member Sam Gon’s resignation.

The Department of Land and Natural Resources announces the opening of the 2017-2018 game bird hunting season on Saturday, November 4, 2017. The fall game bird hunting season will run through Sunday, January 28, 2018. A valid hunting license and a game bird stamp are required for all game bird hunting on public and private lands. All game bird hunting is regulated by Hawaii Administrative Rules Title 13, Chapter 122 (see http://hawaii.gov/dlnr/dofaw “Administrative Rules” for all legal hunting days).

Circuit Court Judge Jeffrey Crabtree ruled today that, based upon a Hawaiʻi Supreme Court opinion issued on September 6, 2017, existing permits for use of fine mesh nets to catch aquatic life for aquarium purposes are illegal and invalid. Judge Crabtree also ordered the DLNR not to issue any new permits pending environmental review.

In the early 1800’s Queen Ka‘ahumanu visited Hanauma Bay, considered one of O‘ahu’s crown jewels over the decades. In modern times more than one million people each year, from all over the world, visit the bay to take in its vast marine and coral life. They snorkel, dive, spend time tanning on the beach, and otherwise enjoy the bay’s natural beauty. Before going into the water, they are educated about the living reef environment and safety practices to help ensure their continued enjoyment of the bay. The State, through the DLNR Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) and the Office of Conservation and Coastal Lands (OCCL); the City and County of Honolulu, through the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), and Ocean Safety and Lifeguard Services; the University of Hawai‘i Sea Grant Program, and the non-profit Friends of Hanauma Bay (the Friends) work together to protect the bay’s unique underwater resources and best ensure the health of fish, corals, marine mammals, and visitors of the bay.

The State Commission on Water Resource Management (CWRM) will hold public hearings on proposed amendments to its administrative rules pertaining to water use, wells and stream diversion works. These proposed amendments will: increase the maximum fine amount from $1,000 to $5,000 for violations, consistent with the State Water Code; and increase the filing fee for well construction and pump installation from $25 to $300.

In response to today’s filing of a petition for a writ of mandamus with the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court by the plaintiffs in Umberger v. DLNR, the Dept. of Land and Natural Resources provides the following statement

The mediated settlement, approved by the Hawai‘i State Water Commission in April, to immediately restore continuous flows in West Kaua‘i’s Waimea River, is the subject of a video mini-documentary produced by the DLNR.

The public is invited to provide input on the future of State lands at Honolua Bay and Lipoa Point at a community open house on Wednesday, November 8, 2017. The State of Hawai‘i acquired these lands in 2014, following a tremendous effort by the community, guided by the Save Honolua Coalition, the State’s political leaders and others to prevent development of the agricultural lands surrounding Honolua Bay.