POSTED: 14 November 2004 - 7:00pm

There are more problems than just the added traffic

The Auto Express 101 by Austal Ships is the model being considered for Hawaii Superferry

Department of Transportation Super Ferry hearing
Wilcox Elementary School
Tuesday, November 16th at 6:00pm

When people drove by Na Wiliwili Harbor a few months ago or went on board to see a prototype of the Super Ferry to be built for Hawai`i, many were excited about the prospect of inexpensive transportation to neighbor islands and being able to take our cars - eliminating the need to rent them at our destination. I must admit that thought was tempting for a moment until I thought about the fact that people would be coming over here to Kaua`i with their cars and in great numbers (900 people, 200 cars & 15 trucks possible on every ferry). Yikes, how could our already choked roads handle all those cars?? We would face even greater grid-lock than we are anticipating with all the resort development that has been approved and is being approved on Kaua`i.

Where would all the additional people park at our beaches where parking spaces are already limited? Would there be enough room for us at own beaches? What about all the additional people on the trails which are barely to poorly maintained?  Will our island be loved to death, causing degradation from the large swells of visitors?

What about transporting of miconia seeds on the wheels of automobiles? Kaua`i has worked hard to prevent miconia from getting a foot hold here. The other islands haven't been as fortunate with acres of uncontrollable miconia crowding out native plant species. What other unwanted alien species or viruses would it bring in to threaten our native flora and fauna?

What about local fishermen dependent upon fishing to feed their families? What will happen to already decreasing fish stocks?? Read what a fisherman on Maui wrote about the project:

"I'm against it!!! I strongly believe that more thought needs to be put into this super ferry. Every week we go to the harbor to fish and even though we don't always catch something it is the feeling of being able to practice our Hawaiian rights and at the same time enjoy the outdoors and the beautiful view of Pa`ia and the horizon. We already don't have much fish in the Hawaiian waters can you imagine what this will do to the fish in the future. Although the super ferry is a great idea and I would love to not have to rent a car on O`ahu, it's a big a dream and it should stay that way."  Keola D. Eugenio.

Please, everyone, come out in large numbers and tell them we cannot do it. The Super Ferry would have a devastating impact on our island and our quiet, rural way of life.

I've included a letter from Jeff Parker, an orchid-grower on Maui, which contains more insights into the proposal. Hopefully you can click onto his in-depth testimony written to the Department of Transportation.

Aloha - Judy

I am an associate of Lucienne de Naie.  I asked her for contacts on other islands - in order to alert you to what I see as the worse thing to happen in a long time.  i.e., the new "InterIsland Super Ferry" and the State's push to build harbor facilities for the "entrepreneuers".  Nawiliwili is included in this proposal.
I believe that the new super ferry poses new and major risks to Hawaii's environment and culture.  Among other concerns, the Ferry operation will ensure that every new alien pest species that becomes established on one island will rapidly transfer to all islands.    Right now, a new devasting pest, The Glassy-winged Sharpshooter, has become established near Pearl City Oahu, but NOT ON THE OUTER ISLANDS.  These alien pest risks are a far greater threat to agriculture than any benefit promised by increased freight capacity.   Also, since passengers are able to drive their cars into every remote corner of each island, pests can quickly and efficiently be distributed over an entire island.  I believe the Super Ferry promises to convert every island into just another satelite of Oahu.
The consultants hired to do the Draft Environmental Assessment (E.K. Noda and Associates) were convicted last year in the biggest illegal campaign contributions (false name contributions) scandal in Hawaii's history.  EK Noda had done most of the highly controversial environmental studies for the Kahului Airport Expansion.  The period when the campaign donations were being made was exactly the period when the Airport EIS was being accepted by the so-called "accepting authority", in this case Gov. Cayetano.  Ironically, Gov. Cayetano was the recipient of the illegal donations!  (Linda Lingle also received illegal donations from EK Noda).
The super ferry will make it very easy for drug dealers to move their ICE from island to island.  Persons involved in the dangerous illegal pet trade will get a boost from the ease of traveling interisland.

Here on Maui, Kahului Harbor has three surf breaks which are used by the kids living in town.  These will be eliminated by the Harbor Expansion (DOT has already announced that surfing will be discontinued at the famous Lahaina Breakwall when the Ferry service gets under way because of "security concerns").  Canoe clubs currently using the Harbor are in a panic over the proposed Harbor Expansion.
Gov. Lingle and Rod Haraga should never have promised the "entrepreneurs" that the taxpayers would build new multi-million dollar facilities for them PRIOR to any valid environmental studies - and is just another sign of the development-at-any-cost mentality that envelops the Lingle Administration and HDOT. 
Oh, by the way, Mayor Alan Arakawa has submitted a very strong comment letter on the Draft EA, citing major concerns with the project and with improprieties surrounding the process of preparing the DEA.
Because the Super Ferry is a statewide SYSTEM, we are demanding a new and seperate full-blown Joint Federal / State EIS. The draft EA is a ridiculous whitewash which says absolutely nothing.
I hope you are interested in this - and I stand by prepared to assist you with any info I can provide.  Attached is my comment letter - I hope you can read it - it contains many important points.
Aloha - Jeffrey Parker: President
Tropical Orchid Farm, Inc.
Haiku, Maui
(808) 572-8569