ASSOCIATION OF HAWAIIAN CIVIC CLUBS
No. 2019 – 52
URGING THE STATE OF HAWAI‘I AND ALL COUNTIES TO CREATE AN ADEQUATE BUFFER ZONE AROUND LANDFILLS WITH A MINIMUM BUFFER ZONE OF ONE-HALF MILE
WHEREAS, there is an emergence of scientific studies affirming the health hazards of living and working near landfills, including studies published by the World Health Organization in 2015, and “Living near a landfill may damage your health” published by the International Journal of Epidemiology, Oxford University Press, in 2016; and
WHEREAS, the State of Hawaiʻi and the four counties lack landfill buffer zone requirements that adequately protect public health; and
WHEREAS, adequate landfill buffer zones provide minimum space of four miles and improvements, particularly trees and other vegetation, between a landfill’s structures used for handling or storing waste and homes, schools, and other public places; and
WHEREAS, hundreds of residents of Nānākuli Town and the Nānākuli Hawaiian Homestead, thousands of students attending Ka Waihona o Ka Na‘auao Public Charter School, Nānāikapono Elementary School, Nānākuli Elementary School, Nānākuli High and Intermediate School, Kamehameha Schools Community Learning Center, and thousands of members of the public go to places of worship, clinics, grocery stores, restaurants, and visit their ʻohana at the Nānākuli kupuna housing, all within four miles of O‘ahu’s only construction and demolition landfill, the privately-owned landfill operated by PVT Land Company, Ltd. (PVT Landfill); and
WHEREAS, the current buffer zone between PVT Landfill and the nearest residential units and churches is approximately 750 feet; and
WHEREAS, since the 1980s, kamaʻāina offered numerous oral and written testimony at Neighborhood Board meetings in the City and County of Honolulu, State of Hawai‘i Department of Health public hearings, and community gatherings at churches voicing concerns over the adverse health impacts of living and working in close proximity to landfills in general and PVT Landfill, in specific; and
WHEREAS, the State of Hawai‘i Department of Health has still not addressed the outstanding inquiries from the community related to the long-term health effects of the debris that runs off of PVT Landfill during heavy rains, the leachate that permeates the ground, the dust particles from both PVT Landfill and its trucks that coat neighborhood houses as they drive through the community, and the gasses released by the decomposition of waste and other landfill activities, especially the cumulative and long-term health effects on those living and working within four miles of landfill; and
WHEREAS, the predominantly Native Hawaiian communities of Nānākuli Town and Nānākuli Hawaiian Homestead should no longer be subject to the adverse effects of landfills; and
WHEREAS, no community in Hawaiʻi should be impacted by the adverse effects of landfills.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs at its 60th Annual Convention in Lahaina, Maui, in the malama of Welehu and the rising of Lāʻau Pau, this 16th day of November 2019, urging the State of Hawai‘i and City and County of Honolulu to create an adequate buffer zone around landfills with a minimum buffer zone of one-half mile; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a certified copy of this resolution be transmitted to the Governor of the State of Hawai‘i, President of the State Senate, Speaker of the State House of Representatives, Chair of the State Senate subject matter committee on Hawaiian Affairs, Chair of the State House subject matter committee on Hawaiian Affairs, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, and all County Mayors.
The undersigned hereby certifies that the foregoing Resolution was duly adopted in the malama of Welehu and the rising of Lāʻau Pau on the 16th day of November 2019, at the 60th Annual Convention of the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs in Lahaina, Maui.
Hailama V. K. K. Farden, President