Top Maui Headlines: June 14, 2018
“Eerie and unsettling.” That’s how officials are describing seismic activity on Hawai‘i Island. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory authorities say the Fissure 8 complex along the East Rift Zone of the Kīlauea Volcano remains active, with fountaining that continues to reach heights of 130 to 150 feet, according to authorities with the US Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Lava from the growing cinder cone at Fissure 8 is feeding a ‘fast-moving channelized flow’ that continues all the way to the ocean at Kapoho. New estimates show around 250 acres of new land has been created at the ocean entry point, where a laze hazard remains strong. On Wednesday June 13, there was yet another explosive eruption at the summit of Kīlauea at 3:40 a.m. that brought a preliminary 5.4 magnitude seismic reading, one of dozens in six weeks. The latest pattern of activity is occurring on almost a daily basis. Maui Now meteorologist Malika Dudley brought us some moving on-scene reports, sharing footage inside Leilani Estates, speaking exclusively to the mayor and expressing the emotional toll all this is taking on residents.
Hawai‘i is poised to become the first state in the nation to ban pesticides containing chlorpyrifos, a chemical that has been linked to developmental delays and learning disabilities in children. Residents across the state have rallied against the use of the dangerous pesticide, especially near schools. Exposure has reportedly sent people to the hospital here in Hawai‘i. The bill bans chlorpyrifos and restricts the use of certain pesticides within 100 feet of schools; plus it requires transparency and disclosure for the application of restricted-use pesticides in large quantities. Lawmakers say the measure is common-sense solution to protect young, elderly and vulnerable individuals from the unintended impacts of large-scale agricultural pesticide use. They add that chlorpyrifos has already been banned by many other nations, but not the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Maui renters apparently need to work 123 hours a week to afford the average two-bedroom apartment here. That’s according to a details in the Out of Reach 2018 report, compiled by the National Low Income Housing Coalition. It’s outlined the average “housing wage,” which is an estimate of the hourly wage a full-time worker must earn to pay fair market rent without spending more than 30% of his or her income on housing costs. So where does Hawai‘i stand on that? The new national report shows our state has the highest “housing wage” in the country, at $36.13 per hour, or over $75,000 per year. The average renter in Hawai‘i earns much less: $16.16 per hour. Advocates do applaud the state’s efforts to commit $200 million dollars toward affordable housing throughout Hawai‘i. A Landlord Summit happening in Kahului on May 25th aims to make more rentals available to those who need housing the most; learn more at MauiNow.com.
Year 19 of the Maui Film Festival is now in action! The festival will offer a solid schedule of film at its Celestial Cinema under the stars and Toes-in-the-Sand Cinema in Wailea, along with screenings at The Maui Arts and Cultural Center in Kahului. There are also fun dining events and star-studded award ceremonies to enjoy — don’t miss out! Get the details in our special film festival section.