West Maui symposium on managed retreat

The Maui News | November 18, 2018


Groups working to sustain shoreline

In recent years, West Maui community members have been organizing to protect their shorelines. From 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Dec. 7, the broad umbrella group Na Papa’i Wawae ‘Ula’ula and the West Maui Preservation Association, along with other sponsoring organizations, will host a one-day symposium, “Disappearing Shorelines and Managed Retreat: A Conversation,” at Wai Ola Church.

Na Papa’i Wawae ‘Ula’ula literally means the “red-footed crabs.” The name refers to the people of Kaanapali district who were “red-footed” because of their red-dirt-colored feet.

The symposium will assemble a spectrum of experts, policymakers, coastal geologists, legislators and community advocates to discuss managed retreat and other means of sustaining West Maui’s shorelines and coastal resources for generations to come. Roundtable participants will address, amongst other topics:

  • The concept of managed retreat and what it may mean for West Maui.
  • Public financing mechanisms for managed retreat.
  • Realignment of Honoapiilani Highway to avoid sea level rise.
  • Threats posed by sea level rise and shoreline hardening to Hawaiian cultural practice.
  • Shoreline management solutions.

Chip Fletcher, a renowned coastal geologist based in Honolulu, will offer the keynote address.

Speakers include those from the state Office of Conservation and Coastal Lands, Maui Metropolitan Planning Organization, county Planning Department, county Department of Public Works, UH Sea Grant, UH Coastal Geology Group, East-West Center, Maui Tomorrow, the state Senate, Kua’aina Ulu ‘Auamo, Maui Tomorrow and Surfrider, among others. Panel discussions are expected to be vigorous and informative.

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