230
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES             H.R. NO.              
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
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                     HOUSE  RESOLUTION

  REQUESTING THE CONVENING OF A MEETING TO CONSIDER MEANS TO
    ATTRACT CARBON INVESTMENTS TO MITIGATE GLOBAL WARMING
    THROUGH SUSTAINABLE FORESTRY IN HAWAII.



 1        WHEREAS, climate change is an issue of global importance;
 2   and
 3   
 4        WHEREAS, the continuing negotiation of the Kyoto Protocol,
 5   which has been signed by the United States, signals a growing
 6   commitment by the international community to reduce net
 7   emissions of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere; and
 8   
 9        WHEREAS, the Kyoto Protocol identifies flexible mechanisms
10   that are designed to offer access by government and industry to
11   the widest range of options in addressing the climate change
12   issue; and
13   
14        WHEREAS, one of the most innovative elements of the Kyoto
15   Protocol is the recognition of carbon sinks; and
16   
17        WHEREAS, carbon sinks include newly-planted forests on
18   previously cleared or non-forested lands and existing forests,
19   in which trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and
20   store or "sequester" it in a solid form as wood; and
21   
22        WHEREAS, although the market for carbon credits is still
23   formative, many companies are already investing in carbon
24   offset forestry (COF) projects for public relations as well as
25   carbon sequestration benefits; and
26   
27        WHEREAS, the Hawaii AES Barbers Point project is an
28   example of a company investing in COF projects by committing
29   moneys for the purchase of land and forest conservation for
30   tropical forests in Paraguay; and
31   
32        WHEREAS, the State of Hawaii has a unique combination of
33   attributes and a window of opportunity to establish COF
34   projects which can be designed in Hawaii that meet all
35   identified international criteria, and that contribute
36   positively to both environmental protection and economic
37   development in the State; and
38   
39        WHEREAS, the State's forest sector has the potential to

 
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 1   offer a surplus of carbon storage credits to the private
 2   sector; and
 3   
 4        WHEREAS, millions of dollars of carbon investments could
 5   be attracted from outside Hawaii to partner with the State and
 6   private landowners to mitigate global warming and create a
 7   sustainable forest industry that contributes positively to both
 8   environmental protection and economic development priorities in
 9   the State; and
10   
11        WHEREAS, these goals are possible if the State has a
12   secure land base for reforestation, focused marketing strategy,
13   coordinated governmental land use policy and regulatory
14   climate, and a viable internal forest management capability;
15   and
16   
17        WHEREAS, the Hawaii Forestry and Community Initiative was
18   formed by five state departments (the Department of Land and
19   Natural Resources, the Department of Agriculture, the
20   Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism, the
21   Department of Hawaiian Homelands, and the Department of Labor
22   and Industrial Relations) and three federal USDA agencies in
23   April, 1997, to coordinate the government efforts to encourage
24   value-added forestry for and with local communities; now,
25   therefore,
26   
27        BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the
28   Twentieth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session
29   of 1999, that the Hawaii Forestry and Communities Executive
30   Council and the Department of Health are requested to convene a
31   meeting of affected stakeholders to include local utilities and
32   financial institutions, forest investors, private landowners,
33   the agricultural sector, hunter and environmental groups,
34   native Hawaiian groups, and other interested constituents; and
35   
36        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the participants at the
37   meeting consider regulatory, policy, fiscal, and human
38   resources that are needed to attract carbon investments that
39   mitigate global warming through sustainable forestry that does
40   not displace native vegetation, including the following:
41   
42        (1)  Forest inventory needs; 
43   
44        (2)  Strategies for the disposition of public wood and
45             lands to optimize carbon sequestration; 
46   

 
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 1        (3)  Potential COF projects including urban forestry,
 2             wildland fire protection, native forest protection,
 3             koa reforestation, high-value longer rotation forest
 4             plantations, and agroforestry; 
 5   
 6        (4)  Private landowner partnerships; and 
 7   
 8        (5)  Appropriate investment instruments to encourage COF
 9             projects in Hawaii; 
10   
11   and
12   
13        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Hawaii Forestry and
14   Communities Executive Council report the findings and
15   recommendations of the meeting to the Legislature no later than
16   twenty days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of
17   2000; and 
18   
19        BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this
20   Resolution be transmitted to the Director of Health, and the
21   Chairperson of the Hawaii Forestry and Communities Executive
22   Council.
23 
24 
25 
26                         OFFERED BY:  ____________________________