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Who cares about the water quality of our near shore ocean? Doesn’t everyone? You might expect that anyone who enters: snorkelers, divers, swimmers, surfers, fishers, paddlers (SUP, outrigger & kayak), wind surfers, boaters, kiters and waders leadIMG_3326IMG_2605 the list, followed by the recreation businesses who foster these activities. Moreover anyone who profits from this interest, so all the hotels, vacation condos, and in fact any business which serves the visitor industry.

OK, maybe it is easier to answer who does not care? Anyone? So just about everyone cares, because of the concern for the environment, health and the economy. But what and how are they (YOU?) willing to protect it from pollution

Basic individual or ohana actions: you don’t trash the beach- whatever you bring you remove when you leave. You don’t put pollutants in or near storm drains to wash unabated into the kai. But does it not take more than individual effort? Does it not take the actions of the government to insure control for what is beyond individuals’ control? We need county government to control sewage, be it from wastewater systems or cesspools and septic systems. We need laws in place, with appropriate penalties, to insure those who are unconcerned with the common good are persuaded to participate. We need progressive officials who are aware of changes, and not content with the “way we used to do it.” Maybe we have learned and now know better. Maybe look way back at how the “pre-contact” kanaka were part of the natural environment? We need construction BMP’s to be effective and improved when they are not effective. (KCA BMP’s are much stronger than current county ones- see http://gokihei.org/wp-content/uploads/BestManagementPractices_12-14.pdf )

We need adequate testing done on water quality, & results publicized reasonably, so the community is aware, and can make informed choices. Hiding poor water quality from visitors is counterproductive. When they become aware- and they will- trust will be gone and so will the visitors. The visitor industry should be leading this charge. But all of us who care need to participate.