Testimony from Jim Albertini in opposition to the TMT. Mahalo Uncle Jim for coming to the meeting and sharing your mana‘o!
Malu `Aina Center For Non-violent Education & Action
P.O. Box AB Kurtistown, Hawaii 96760
firstname.lastname@example.org Visit us on the web at www.malu-aina.org
Office of Conservation and Coastal Management
Department of Land and Natural Resources
P.O. Box 621
Honolulu, Hawaii 96809
December 2, 2010
Re: CDUA HA 3568 for the Thirty Meter Telescope
The TMT project has the same smell as the fast track DLNR plan years back to put geothermal development in the Natural Area Reserve Conservation district known as the Wao kele O Puna Rainforest –the last remaining intact lowland rainforest in Hawaii. That misguided effort resulted in hundreds of arrests for non-violent civil resistance and was stopped over the failure to do a Federal EIS. The same may be required for the TMT. Federal funds are involved and no Federal EIS has been done.
Our non-profit organization, Malu Aina Center for Non-violent Education & Action, grows food to share with people in need and to support the work of justice, peace, and preserving the environment. We stand in strong opposition to the Conservation District Use Permit requested for the Thirty Meter Telescope on sacred Mauna Kea. We recommend that the Board deny the permit request for the following reasons.
The current state of Mauna Kea represents a microcosm of our planet heading off the cliff of Global Warming due to over-development.
For our planet, the evidence is crystal clear that the present course of industrial development is heading for unprecedented catastrophe. But are we willing to seriously change the way we live, and the decisions we make day to day. Are we willing to put conservation before development?
On Mauna Kea —
1. We know that the cumulative impacts on Mauna Kea according to the 2005 EIS done by NASA are “substantial, adverse and significant” yet we still go forward with more building: 5 meter telescopes, 10 meters, now 30 meters, with no end in sight. The “bigger is better” logic will eventually put a mirror over the entire summit.
2. We know that No study has been done to assess the carrying capacity of the mountain for development.
3. We know that the University of Hawaii and its self appointed Mauna Kea Management Board are in a position of conflict of interest. The University benefits financially from telescope development yet it is suppose to be a management entity for conservation on the mountain. The record is clear: development trumps conservation. When will we learn? When will we reverse course and put conservation before development?
For our organization the bottom line is this. The host culture of Hawaii tells us that the summit of Mauna Kea is the most sacred temple in all Hawaii. In fact, Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa are two of the most sacred sites in all the Pacific. Do we simply hear those words but have no understanding of their meaning? Or do we understand but disregard the meaning out of other concerns –science, prestige, development money and jobs? In any case, to proceed with further development in the summit area of Mauna Kea is desecration of the most sacred temple in Hawaii. It is disrespectful. It is shameful. In the Judeo/Christian sense, it is sacrilegious. It is sinful. The irony is that looking into the heavens will be our downfall because we have not shown respect. We look into space but not listen to the native people of this place. If we want to be pono, the means we use must be in line with the end that we seek. It is time to live aloha — live the principles of non-violence in Hawaii and around the world. Aloha demands justice. The conflict over expanding construction on Mauna Kea, like the expansion of militarism and warfare training at Pohakuloa represent sores/infections on the ‘aina. They are symptoms of a deeper problem. What is truly needed to heal is to end the ongoing illegal U.S. Occupation of Hawaii. I am confident that a reinstated independent nation of Hawaii would never permit the desecration of its most sacred temple.
Deny this permit request. Mahalo.
James V. Albertini
Malu ‘Aina Center for Non-violent Education & Action
Kurtistown, Hawai’i 96760
Visit us on the web at: www.malu-aina.org