Tuesday, January 19, 2021
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Friday, December 2, 2011
Thielen: Federal Takeover of Hawaii Shorelines Would Endanger Clean Energy Projects
By News Release @ 11:19 PM :: 7144 Views :: Maui County, Education K-12, Energy, Environment, National News, Ethics

PROPOSED FEDERAL RULE WOULD ENDANGER CLEAN ENERGY PROJECTS IN HAWAII 

News Release from Office of Rep Cynthia Thielen

Honolulu December 1, 2011– Hawai‘i State Representative Cynthia Thielen (R, 50th District: Kailua, Kaneohe Bay) submitted the following letter today to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expressing her strong opposition to a proposed critical habitat rule that would endanger clean energy projects in Hawaii:

Mr. Michael Tosatto, Regional Administrator

U.S. Department of Commerce, National Marine Fisheries Service, Pacific Islands Office

1601 Kapiolani Blvd. Suite 1110, Honolulu, Hawaii 96814-4700

 

Dear Mr. Tosatto:

Regarding Rule # 064B-BA81 

I am writing to voice my strong opposition to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency's (NOAA) proposed rule to designate the shorelines and waters surrounding all of the main Hawaiian Islands as a critical habitat for the Hawaiian monk seals. I am also informing you that I intend to introduce legislation in the 2012 Hawaii legislative session that will instruct the State of Hawaii, including the Department of Land and Natural Resources, to officially oppose the NOAA rulemaking action.

Recently, members of the NOAA staff testified at a Legislative briefing about the proposed rule. They displayed maps showing nearly the entire windward coastline of Oahu as part of the habitat. I was stunned when these representatives admitted they had not talked to the Clean Energy Division in the State Department of Economic Development and Tourism. They also seemed to be oblivious to the number of clean energy projects planned or underway in Hawaii. These include ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC), deep sea air conditioning, and wave energy programs.

I am opposing this rule, because your agency's extensive and overly aggressive rulemaking effort will effectively kill ocean-based clean energy initiatives in Hawaii. As an environmental attorney who has worked for decades as a champion of a clean and sustainable environment, I know first-hand the impact that can occur. In the 1980’s, I successfully raised claims under the Endangered Species Act, temporarily stopping the federally-funded H-3 project.

Hawaii is the most oil dependent State in the United States. We send an estimated $7 billion out of state every year to purchase petroleum to fuel our islands. The unimpeded development of clean energy projects, including ocean-based projects, is vital to breaking our oil dependence.

My staff has examined the documentation prepared by NOAA for the critical habitat designation. NOAA's own economic report admits that your agency has insufficient data to be able to determine the economic impacts of the federal critical habitat proposal on clean energy programs. The report also indicates there is insufficient data to estimate the effect on many other activities including harbors modernization, oil spill clean ups, and beach replenishment and restoration projects. I find it inappropriate that your agency would proceed when these impacts are, by your own admission, unknown.

I am proud of my record of environmental activism. I understand the need to protect and encourage the re-propagation of Hawaiian monk seals. However, your own data seems to indicate that the monk seals are doing better where the critical habitat designation does not exist.

I urge you to re-weigh the significant and long-term impacts of placing all of the main Hawaiian Islands under a critical habitat designation. Doing this will endanger Hawaii's critical habitat for clean and renewable energy and continue to tie us to an unsustainable and environmentally dangerous dependence on oil.

"I urge all concerned citizens, particularly those involved in clean and renewable energy programs, to voice their concerns to Federal officials prior to the January 6, 2012 public comment deadline." Rep. Cynthia Thielen stated. "Hawaii cannot let federal staff impede our efforts in wave energy, ocean thermal energy conversion, seawater air conditioning, and related ocean-based energy projects. It is possible to protect monk seals in a responsible and thoughtful manner, but the proposed NOAA rule is too broad and heavy-handed." 

####

Related: Lingle calls for Delay in Federal Grab for Control of Hawaii Shorelines

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

808 Silent Majority

ACA Signups Hawaii

ALEC

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

ChinaTownWatch.com

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

DeedySupport.com

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation

HIEC.Coop

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

KeyWiki

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii

NARTH

Natatorium.org

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Hawaiian

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

OurFutureHawaii.com

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

P.U.E.O.

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Sink the Jones Act

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

UCC Truths

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

VAREP Honolulu

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii

Yes2TMT