Report Title:

Molokai Landfill Expansion; Appropriation


Appropriates funds to: expand the Naiwa landfill on Molokai, add 3 additional disposal cells; establish recycling and refuse convenience centers in west and east Molokai; continue promotion of community-based solid waste management and recycling; and create pilot projects for experimental technology, progressive waste-management practices, and recycling. (SD1)


S.B. NO.



S.D. 1






relating to solid waste management.



SECTION 1. The legislature finds that solid waste disposal is an issue of critical importance throughout the islands, particularly for county governments faced with limited landfill capabilities. The Molokai Naiwa landfill is no exception. Consisting of approximately twenty-five acres, the Naiwa landfill began its operation in October 1993, with a life expectancy of thirty years. The Naiwa landfill was originally planned to consist of six disposal cells and is nearing capacity of its third cell. Accordingly, the three remaining cells must be constructed to complete this facility and adequately address the solid waste disposal demands of the island.

The legislature further finds that the Naiwa landfill is the only landfill on Molokai, situated three miles northwest of Kaunakakai, makai of Highway 460. Though its location is convenient for central Molokai residents, the landfill is nearly sixteen miles from the west end of the island and more than twenty miles from the east end of the island. There are no recycling or refuse convenience centers on either end of the island. As a result, the distance that residents from east and west Molokai must travel to dispose of waste or recyclable material at the landfill is inconvenient and may contribute to illegal dumping or burning.

In addition, the removal of recyclable materials from Molokai can be problematic because of the cost of transporting and processing the materials. Accordingly, recyclable materials and abandoned vehicles are temporarily stockpiled at the landfill. The stockpiling of materials has resulted in: thousands of abandoned vehicles and tires; hundreds of spent propane tanks; and numerous bales of cardboard. The stockpiled materials are not properly stored and are subject to weather conditions, which contributes to the decomposing of certain recyclables. Consequently, the materials are no longer adequate for recycling, resulting in the disposal of certain recyclables in the landfill. Furthermore, state law prohibits the disposal of abandoned vehicles and white goods in landfill operations. Thus, there is an urgent need to facilitate the processing of these vehicles and develop an efficient and economical method for recycling.

Molokai has been mired in an eight-year recession, which has impacted its economy, quality of life, and maintenance of its natural resources. Improved solid waste disposal and recycling are needed to preserve Molokai's natural resources. To this end, the community has taken a proactive approach to addressing solid waste management through resident-initiated programs. Ke Aupuni Lokahi, a Molokai enterprise community based citizen board, working with the Rural Community Assistance Corporation, receives grants from the United States Department of Agriculture for training and technical assistance in the development of a solid waste management plan. Na Pua Nohi Naauao, a young adults leadership group, has volunteered to assist with the development of a solid waste management plan and formed a solid waste management committee. A student group identified as Providing Resolutions with Integrity for a Sustainable Molokai (PRISM) at Kualapuu elementary school, has developed and implemented a recycling program and partnered with Na Pua Nohi Naauao on the creation of a solid waste management plan.

The Molokai community has played a responsible role in meeting the demands of solid waste management, but the community needs assistance to further succeed in its efforts. The promotion of new and innovative technologies in the handling of solid waste would help to address landfill capacity, illegal dumping, and eliminate the disposal of recyclables into the landfill. Furthermore, the creation of such technology would generate revenue and provide much-needed economic stimulus to Molokai. Funding is required to further promote the resident-based efforts, to expand these programs, and to develop experimental technology, such as waste-to-energy, biodiesel production, use of landfill gas, and bioconversion. Other efforts may include progressive waste-management practices, creative pilot projects, processing of abandoned vehicles, and the promotion of recycling to enhance Molokai's quality of life and environment.

Crockett, Texas, with a population of eight thousand three hundred, about the same as Molokai's, is an excellent example of what a small community can do to address a major environmental problem. Crockett is noted for its aggressive recycling program. Approximately eighty-five per cent of its residents participate in its curbside recycling collection effort. Crockett also boasts that it is now recycling more materials than it disposes in its landfill. Given Molokai's established community-based organizations and the appropriate tools, Molokai can similarly be recognized for its efforts in addressing the community's solid waste management concerns and provide a model for communities throughout Hawaii.

The legislature finds that the use of experimental technology, progressive waste-management, and recycling on Molokai should be promoted to serve as demonstration projects. The state and county governments need to increase their efforts to make use of scientific and technological advances in these fields.

SECTION 2. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $          , or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2004-2005, for the purpose of: expanding the Naiwa landfill on the island of Molokai, including three additional disposal cells; establishing recycling and refuse convenience centers on both the west and east portions of Molokai; promoting community-based solid waste management and recycling; and creating pilot projects for experimental technology, progressive waste-management practices, and recycling on the island of Molokai.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the county of Maui for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 3. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2004.