Breaking News: Sierra Club Maui & Allies File Lawsuit to Protect Makena

Breaking News!

Sierra Club Maui & Allies File Lawsuit to Protect Makena

Sierra Club Maui Group, Maui Tomorrow Foundation, and Ho’oponopono O Makena filed a lawsuit on May 2, 2017 asking the Maui Environmental Court to halt the approval of Makena Resort’s Environmental Assessment. We are extremely worried about the environmental and cultural impacts that Makena Resort’s current proposal would have on the area and are doing everything we can to ensure a proper review be completed in the form of an Environmental Impact Statement.

Through our lawsuit, we are seeking to invalidate the Maui Planning Commission’s acceptance of the Final Environmental Assessment (FEA) and issuance of a Finding of No Significant Impact for development of the proposed 47-acre M?kena Resort M-5/M-6/S-7/B-2 project, a 158-unit gated luxury community on the mauka side of Makena-Keone’o’io Road, above Makena Landing. The FEA was approved by a 5-3 vote, with several members of the Commission expressing strong reservations regarding unresolved impacts. Read our full press release here.

 

Please support Sierra Club Maui fight the good fight by making a tax-deductible donation to support our legal fees.

You can write a check to “Sierra Club Foundation” with “Maui Group” in the memo line and mail it to: P.O. Box 791180, Pa’ia, HI, 96779 or email us to find out how to donate by credit card.

We also need non-tax deductible donations that enable Sierra Club Maui Group to do the important political work that keeps Maui?s environment protected. Click here to donate to our general operating fund.

 

Mahalo for your support, and stay tuned for updates!

Take Action for East Maui Streams!

This action has now finished.

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Tell the state: we need a FAIR & HONEST Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed A&B East Maui Stream lease.

Use the form below to submit your letter by Friday, March 10th.

Background Information

Why Does A&B need an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to divert East Maui streams?

  • Alexander & Baldwin (A&B) has requested a 30-year Water Lease from the HI State Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR).
  • The lease application, if approved as is, would give A&B the right to continue to divert East Maui streams flowing through four License areas on public lands, from Honopou to Nahiku.
  • Before a lease like this can be approved, BLNR requires an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) be commissioned.
  • The EIS is supposed to document all the ways the lease proposal could impact natural or cultural resources, and whether these impacts can be mitigated.
  • The BLNR then uses the EIS to determine whether or not to approve a lease.
Who should prepare the EIS?
  •  A&B has hired a consultant to prepare the EIS, but the leases are awarded through public bidding, and could theoretically, go to another bidder.
  • We can’t count on the EIS to have an impartial view if A&B hires, pays for, and directs the consultants who prepare this document.

Is the lease bidding process really fair, open and legitimate if A&B is the only bidder to have prepared an EIS?

  • With A&B in charge of the EIS process, the public cannot trust that the EIS findings will be complete because the consultant is first and foremost accountable to the entity that pays its bills, which is A&B.
  • Our communities have waited over 20 years for an EIS that discusses the real impacts of the longtime East Maui stream diversions. Let’s get it right!
  • We want the EIS to be as thorough as possible so that the BLNR will have adequate information to make a decision on whether to approve a lease for this area and, if so, what types of limitations or alternative options to a 30 year lease should be considered.

Send your letter to the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) staff asking them to direct the preparation of this EIS.

  • This will ensure that core parts of the EIS – the definition of the current environment and the identification of alternatives – be comprehensive and encompass all the possible outcomes for the management of these waters and areas.
  • This will also help instill trust that the completed EIS will be impartial and independent of A&B’s wants.
  • Your letter will be sent to DLNR, A&B and their consultant company Wilson Okamoto Corporation. You letter both requests a change to the process as well as gives comments on what topics must be covered in the EIS, no matter who writes it.
The EIS Preparation Notice for the proposed Water Lease is available at: http://bit.ly/2m55pZn
Comments on the EIS Preparation Notice are due by Friday, March 10, 2017.

Help Save Makena!

UPDATE: Temporary Success!

Let’s Keep the Momentum Going!

Mahalo to everyone who asked the Planning Commission to reject the Final Environmental Assessment (FEA) for 47 acre Makena Resort project. In all, there were:

  • 45+ people who sent in letters to the Planning Commission asking them to reject the FEA,
  • 30+ people who came out on January 10th to testify against the FEA,
  • 925+ people who signed the petition so far.

The Planning Commission has voted to defer their vote on whether to accept or reject this FEA, so it’s still possible they may accept it in the future. We’ll keep you posted as new developments occur! The Planning Commission will likely be re-hearing this issue within the next 3-6 months.

If you haven’t already signed the petition to the Planning Commission asking for a more thorough Environmental Impact Statement study to be done, click here to add your name.

 

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Sign the Petition & Testify at January 10th Planning Commission Meeting

BACKGROUND
On Tuesday, January 10th, the Maui Planning Commission will decide whether to approve the Makena Development Resort’s Final Environmental Assessment (FEA), which claims the 47 acre development will have NO significant impact on the area, despite the fact that the site is full of environmental and cultural treasures. In addition, the 47 acre development is very clearly just one small part of a much larger 1,800 development project that is being planned for Makena by the land owners.

We want the Planning Commission to REJECT this Final Environmental Assessment for the 47 acre project and instead require a much more thorough Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) be done for the entire 1,800 acres. An EIS will examine 1) exactly how this project will negatively impact the surrounding environment, and 2) how to mitigate these impacts before any final development plans are put in place and construction starts.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

1) Click here to sign the petition to the Planning Commission.

2) Email the Planning Commission by Monday the 9th asking them to reject the Final Environmental Assessment and instead require an Environmental Impact Statement. Make sure to say you are writing about item C-1 on the Maui Planning Commission January 10, 2017 agenda. Send your email to planning@mauicounty.gov

3) Testify in person at the Planning Commission meeting – Tuesday the 10th at 9 am in the Planning Department Conference Room, First Floor – 250 South High Street, Wailuku. They need to hear the voices of Makena residents and how building at Makena Landing will negatively affect families, cultural rights and access, and our environment. Please be RESPECTFUL of the Planning Commissioners. They are volunteers who are giving their time for the community.