THE SENATE

S.C.R. NO.

52

THIRTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2021

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

SENATE CONCURRENT

RESOLUTION

 

 

requesting the hawaii climate change mitigation and adaptation commission and the county of hawaii to collaborate to identify SEA LEVEL RISE AT KAHALUU BAY and jointly pursue a master plan to relocate the pavilion at Kahaluu bay, HAWAII.

 

 


WHEREAS, Hawaii is already experiencing the impacts of climate change, including rising sea levels, extreme tides, accelerated coastal erosion, and stronger, more frequent storms; and

 

WHEREAS, the Hawaii Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Commission produced the first Hawaii sea level rise vulnerability and adaption report that identified areas that are susceptible to a sea level rise impacts and urged immediate preparation to a 3.2-foot increase in sea level by 2060; and

 

WHEREAS, at the State's first annual climate conference held on January 14, 2019, an expert panel recommended that the State "consider adopting a community resilience building planning process to help Hawaii's communities, counties, and institutions of any scale to identify their top priorities based on climate change hazards cross-reference to strengths and vulnerabilities relative to infrastructure, social, and environmental characteristics"; and

 

WHEREAS, the first Hawaii Sea Level Rise Vulnerability and Adaption Report finds that sea level rise would result in significant impacts to roads, airports, harbors, electrical and telecommunications, water/wastewater facilities and conveyance systems, and other public service and recreation facilities on the island of Hawaii; and

 

WHEREAS, twenty-five percent of Hawaii island's coastline consists of beaches that play a critical role in providing recreation for residents, providing coastal and estuarine habitats vital to aquatic organisms and enhancing the overall economy; and

 

WHEREAS, over the next thirty to seventy years properties located on or near the island of Hawaii's shorelines will increasingly be flooded, eroded, or completely lost to the sea; and

 

WHEREAS, Kahaluu Bay is a traditional cultural gathering site for native Hawaiians, especially for native Hawaiian communities in the Kahaluu ahupuaa, and the neighboring ahupuaa of Keauhou and Kaumalumalu. Kahaluu Bay is a prime source of fishing, gathering, and surfing, and multiple archaeological sites, including ten heiau; and

 

WHEREAS, Kahaluu Bay District is held in high esteem because of its high historic and cultural value by the communities of South Kona and was added to the National Register of Historic Places on December 27, 1974; and

 

WHEREAS, Kahaluu Bay is the top visited beach park in Hawaii County, recording 437,000 visitors between 2015 and 2016; and

 

WHEREAS, the Kahaluu Bay is in the potential area of chronic flooding with five feet of sea level rise in Kailua-Kona on Hawaii island; and

 

WHEREAS, the current pavilion at Kahaluu Bay is perceived as the focal gathering point of the Kahaluu Beach Park; and

 

WHEREAS, in 2008, the Kahaluu Beach Park Conceptual Master Plan sponsored by the Kohala Center and the County of Hawaii Planning Department found that the current pavilion is much closer to the shoreline than when it was originally built and is subject to continuous wave action, storm damage, and additional damage due to sea level rise to the current walls, structures, and facilities; and

 

WHEREAS, the Kahaluu Beach Park Conceptual Master Plan recommended the relocation of the pavilion back from the shoreline to protect the structure from structural damage that may occur from sea level rise and storm surges; now, therefore,

 

BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Thirty-first Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2021, the House of Representatives concurring, that the Department of Land and Natural Resources and the County of Hawaii are requested to collaborate to identify sea level rise at Kahaluu Bay and jointly pursue a master plan to relocate the pavilion at Kahaluu Bay to avoid further deterioration and avoid damage from sea level rise; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the master plan for relocating the pavilion should factor in sea level rise, continuous damage to the current walls and facilities, and the need to create a safe environment for the public; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Chairpersons of the Hawaii Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Commission, Director of the County of Hawaii Planning Department, and Director of the Division of Parks and Recreation for the County of Hawaii.

 

 

 

 

OFFERED BY:

_____________________________

 

 

Report Title:

Sea Level Rise; Department of Land and Natural Resources; County of Hawaii; Kahaluu Bay