December 1999 - January 2000
Reef cleanup partnership nets record haul
More than 25 tons of marine debris was removed from the northwest Hawaiian
Archipelago between October 6 and November 4 through the cooperative
efforts of government agencies, academia and conservation organizations.
As part of the Marine Reef Debris Cleanup Partnership, the NOAA vessel
Townsend Cromwell and the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Walnut conducted coral
reef restoration research and cleanup operations at Lisianki Island,
Pearl and Hermes Reef, and Midway Island. The two vessels offloaded
the debris at the Sand Island Coast Guard Integrated Support Command
base where it was hauled away by the City and County of Honolulu in
18 containers provided by Browning-Ferris Industries of Hawaii.
This is the second year that the partnership has conducted the massive
cleanup effort. In November, 1998, the first cleanup netted six tons
of debris including whole and partial fish nets, marine lines, ropes,
plastics, batteries and assorted other material. This year’s effort
brought in four times as much debris.
“Last year’s marine reef cleanup effort, although very successful as
a pioneering project, was dwarfed by this year’s exceptional cooperative
teamwork resulting in literally tons of debris and other discarded material
being recovered, said Dr. George Antonelis, chief of the protected species
investigation for the National Marine Fisheries Service Honolulu Laboratory.
Underscoring the debris problem is the record number of endangered Hawaiian
monk seals found entangled over the past year.”
“It was really an eye-opener to see the volume of reef debris accumulated,”
noted Dr. Mary Donohue, chief scientist on the research cleanup cruise.
“I think this year’s haul should be considered a ‘wake-up’ call, not
only to the international fishing community, but to all of us who depend
on the marine environment and use it as well.”
Large masses of nets weighing over 500 pounds have destroyed coral by
washing over shallow reefs. In 1997, for example, nearly 20 percent
of the mass of marine debris removed in one case at the Pearl and Hermes
Reef consisted of dead coral.
Other partners in this year’s cleanup included the U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service, University of Hawaii, Sea Grant Hawaii, Hawaii Wildlife Fund,
the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, and the Center for
Isle longshore contract settled
International Longshore & Warehouse Union dockworkers statewide
ratified a three-year labor contract in November that will incrementally
increase their base wage from $25.12 an hour to $27.12 an hour by mid-2001.
Ratification ended the threat of a strike that had Hawaii consumers
stockpiling household necessities in October.
Along with the pay increases, the new contract raises pension benefits,
retroactive to the contract’s July 1, 1999 start date. Workers retiring
after July 1 will receive $80 a month for each year they have worked,
up to 35 years. Previously they received $57 a month per year of work.
By July 1, 2001, the pension will increase to $95 a month per year of
The pay and pension increases and other benefits bring Hawaii workers
parity with their West Coast counterparts, which was one of the union’s
primary objectives in its contract negotiations.
Working conditions and jurisdiction on the docks were other key issues.
The contract covers approximately 500 dockworkers employed by Matson
Terminals, Inc., Hawaii Stevedores, McCabe Hamilton & Renny Co.,
Ltd. and HT&T Co.
Y2K Port Safety Plan Available
The Coast Guard Marine Safety Office has published its Port Safety
Plan for Y2K. Copies of this plan have been sent through the regular
mail to various agencies and is also available on the MSO Honolulu website:
Hazmat Regs Updated, Again
by Capt. Randall F. Lund
Companies that routinely deal in the movement of hazardous materials
understand the importance of updating the federal regulations governing
the transportation of hazardous materials. Once again, the rules have
On March 5, 1999, the final rule, docket HM-215C, was published in the
Federal Register. The purpose of this docket is to harmonize U.S. and
international standards. Harmonization of regulatory regimes in the
United States and foreign countries is obviously very helpful in a global
On August 16, 1999, the Federal Register (Vol. 64, No. 157) revised
final rule docket HM-215C. While this latest revision deals mainly with
typographical errors and omissions found in the final rule, it should
once again remind those involved with the transportation of hazardous
materials of some of the more important changes that went into effect
on October 1, 1999.
Several of the most important and noticeable changes found in the final
rule include the following:
Amendments (entry additions, revisions or deletions) to the Hazardous
Material Table, including four new shipping descriptions to clarify
entries for vehicles with engines of internal combustion (gas or
liquid powered), a very common shipment to and from Hawaii.
The addition of a new symbol “G” to column 1 of the HMT for those
entries that require the use of a technical name in the shipping
Amendments (entry additions, revisions or deletions) to the List
of Marine Pollutants.
Amendments to certain special provisions, including one to deregulate
cotton under specific conditions.
Elimination of the “Keep Away From Food” label and placard, utilizing
instead the “Poison” or “Toxic” placard and, optionally, allowing
the use of “PG III” as text on the label and placard below the mid
line of each, for Division 6.1, PG III material.
Authorization of the reconditioning of packagings other than metal
Obviously these are only a few of the many changes found in the
40-plus-page final rule document commonly called HM-215C or officially
recorded as Docket No. RSPA-98-4185. This docket is available through
the Department of Transportation, Research and Special Project Administration’s
(RSPA) web page, http://hazmat.dot.gov. It is also provided to any
person who attends National Cargo Bureau’s hazardous materials training
course, available nationwide and given monthly on Oahu.
While the requirements to be trained have been in the hazardous materials
regulations since 1993, it is apparent by some of the fines levied by
the RSPA on local businesses earlier this year that not all hazardous
materials employers may be cognizant of the requirements for training.
This is one of the many areas that the RSPA will continue to monitor.
For additional information, or for upcoming hazardous materials training
dates offered by the National Cargo Bureau, call the Honolulu office
at 836-7799 or visit the USCG Marine Safety Office homepage at www.aloha.net/~msohono
and click on “Upcoming Events.”
Capt. Randall F. Lund is a senior surveyor with the National Cargo
Bureau’s Honolulu office.
Ko Olina Marina plans Feb. 2000 opening
by Mele Pochereva
When the Ko Olina Marina opens in early 2000, 266 new boat slips will
help ease Oahu’s shortage of marina facilities. A “soft opening” is
planned for early February, when most of the docks, including a fuel
dock will be operational.
The marina will accommodate yachts up to 150 feet and will include slips
for several commercial boat operators. The developer, Ko Olina Ocean
Marina, LLC hopes to attract current boat owners who would like to move
their vessels to the leeward coast area. Also targeted are residents
who would like to own a boat, but haven’t been able to because of the
lack of marina facilities.
In addition to the 266 slips and fuel dock, facilities will include
a boat launch ramp, 33 trailer parking stalls, dry storage, a marina
store, restrooms, laundry facility, and barbecue and picnic area. Electric,
water, telephone and cable TV service will be available at each dock.
Slip rental rates and applications should be available in early December
by calling Ko Olina Resort & Marina at (808)673-7678.
Pacific Atelier International, Inc., is the architect for the dockmaster
building and comfort station. Contractors for the inwater boat slips
and dredging are Bellingham Marine Industries, design/supplier construction
management; North Pacific Construction, general contractor; and Wilson
Okamoto & Associates, inspecting engineers.
The 43-acre Ko Olina Marina is part of a master-planned resort development
on Oahu’s western shore, which includes the Ihilani Resort & Spa,
a golf course, and the Fairways residential community.
American Classic unveils ‘new’ United States Lines
American Classic Voyages Co., parent company of American Hawaii Cruises,
has acquired one of the most storied names in the history of ocean-going
passenger transportation, United States Lines®,
to be used for its fleet of cruise ships now being developed under the
company’s Project America initiative.
The first ship to sail under the new United States Lines banner will
be the 1,214-passenger Nieuw Amsterdam, which American Classic is acquiring
from Holland America Line next year. The ship will be re-named MS Patriot
and will offer 7-night cruises among the Hawaiian Islands, sailing every
Saturday from Honolulu, beginning December 9, 2000. It will serve as
an interim vessel while two 1,900-passenger ships are being built for
The two new ships will be built by Ingalls Shipbuilding of Pascagoula,
Miss., and will be the first major ocean-going passenger vessels to
be built in the United States in more than 40 years. They also will
be part of the United States Lines fleet and are scheduled to begin
service in Hawaii starting in 2003 and 2004.
In conjunction with the arrival of the MS Patriot next year, American
Hawaii Cruises, a subsidiary of American Classic Voyages, will relocate
its 1,021-passenger SS Independence from Honolulu to a new home port
in Kahului, Maui, where it will begin 7-night inter-island cruises on
November 11, 2000.
Hawaiian Maritime Industry Day 2000
The 9th Annual Hawaiian Maritime Industry Day is set for Wednesday,
March 15, 2000, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. Once again, the event
is co-sponsored by the U.S. Coast Guard Marine Safety Office in Honolulu
and Hawaii Ocean Industry and Shipping News.
The day-long “convention style” presentation schedule will include dozens
of breakout sessions focusing on specific maritime industry issues as
well as an exhibitor’s hall with vendors and organizations presenting
their services, products and information.
Admission will include a continental breakfast, breakout sessions, the
vendor’s hall, lunch, and the closing reception.
Those interested in making a presentation or registration information
may call Lt. Dan Norton at the Marine Safety Office, (808) 522-8256.
Vendors and organizations interested in exhibit space should call Terry
White at Hawaii Ocean Industry & Shipping News, (808) 599-3788.
Kikiaola Harbor improvement funds threatened
As we all know, the state administration is struggling to make ends
meet. In the Department of Land and Natural Resources arena, these
deliberations have included a close examination of their CIP (capital
improvement project) assets, especially those not yet released by Governor
Cayetano. In this quest to prioritize projects and match funds
to these projects, we have learned that the administration is taking
a close look at withholding $2.7 million of the $4.4 million CIP
funds appropriated by the Legislature for Kauai’s Kikiaola Harbor.
One of the ideas tossed around was to use this money for the repair
of the Kailua-Kona Pier. However, subsequent information from DLNR officials
indicates that such a trade-off is not on the table. This is welcome
news, but it does not change the basic threat to the Kikiaola
Harbor CIP funds.
One of the prime benefits that influenced the Legislature’s appropriation
was that it included the development necessary to allow cruise line
tendering operations at Kikiaola, just like the operations at Kailua-Kona
and Lahaina, Maui. Removing $2.7 million from this appropriation effectively
eliminates the construction of the planned multiple-use Kikiaola Harbor
and thus eliminates the cruise line tendering possibility. Kauai
will lose the one chance it had for a good cruise line tendering port-of-call
as well as improved recreational and tour boat capabilities. In addition,
the considerable economic benefits ($40+ million) to Kauai, featured
in the Kikiaola Harbor Master Plan, would be lost.
Right now, Kauai does not have a cruise line tendering port, while Hawaii
County has Kailua-Kona, as well as the commercial ports of Hilo and
Kawaihae. Maui has Lahaina Harbor for tendering and its main harbor
at Kahului. Kauai has only Nawiliwili Harbor. Port Allen, although
used occasionally, is not favored by the cruise ships, according to
a Statewide Cruise Facilities Study released in early 1999.
In the same study, various economic factors pertaining to projected
numbers of jobs created and the amount of passenger, crew and operational
spending by the cruise line industry through the year 2020 are presented
in charts, several of which are categorized by island. Kauai County
is dead last in every category by as much as two to one. The reason
is obvious: Kauai has only one cruise ship port and it can really handle
only one modern cruise ship. This often results in Kauai being skipped
entirely by the large foreign cruise liners.
Removing $2.7 million from the approved Kikiaola CIP funds would only
accentuate the already wide disparity between the cruise line economic
factors of the four counties. Shouldn’t we be striving for parity?
The $4.4 million appropriation was based largely on the attributes of
the community-inspired Kikiaola Harbor Master Plan. The amount is not
sufficient to fund the entire master plan, but with strategic modifications
of the interior harbor design, the basic multiple-user concept could
still be preserved. This is the most essential feature of the
master plan. Recreational boaters, fishermen, commercial tour
boat operators as well as the cruise line tenders would have a decent
harbor in which to conduct their different activities with the least
possible interference with each other. Kikiaola will be the first harbor
to be designed and built to accommodate these multiple uses.
Phase I ($1.7 million) by itself is not sufficient. All it will accomplish
is the dredging of the entrance and access channels, renovation of the
breakwaters and the addition of a floating pier with a few boat slips.
The harbor footprint will not be increased and the infrastructure will
remain at: 1 loading dock, 1 launching ramp, 1 small restroom, limited
parking, limited water and electric service and no covered staging area.
All of these limitations are identified for improvement in Phase II
of the master plan, but cannot be accomplished if the $2.7 million is
withdrawn. An equally important and disturbing factor is that
the chances of recouping these funds later to complete the master plan
would be nil.
This is a bread and butter investment that will help sustain Kauai for
a long time to come. It will also add one more port-of-call to the Hawaii
statewide cruise itinerary and thereby serve to increase Hawaii’s share
of the North American cruise line market, which is now only 1.7 percent.
We encourage the Kauai boating public and others who recognize the economic
and other values of the Kikiaola Harbor project, to contact the governor
and/or his administration to urge the release of the entire $4.4 million
for use as intended at Kikiaola Harbor.
Bill Mossman is a representative of the Hawaii Boaters Political
Hawaii Ocean Industry provides this space as a forum to express viewpoints
on Hawaii’s ocean industry.