Mauna Kea

Noe Tanigawa
Noe Tanigawa

    Last April, social media buzzed as sign wavings for Mauna Kea “protectors” were held as far away as Kentucky and Tonga. With that first wave of publicity over, the “protectors” both on Mauna Kea and Haleakalā now say there's a guiding principal that keeps them going.  HPR’s Noe Tanigawa reports on Kapu Aloha. 

We’ll hear where to look for passing planets in our Aloha State skies, and we find out how several of the observatories on the Mauna Kea summit are providing crucial assistance in the NASA mission to Pluto as HPR All Things Considered Host Dave Lawrence speaks with Christopher Phillips from the Mauna Kea Astronomy Outreach Committee for this week’s Stargazer.

The planets Venus and Jupiter set earlier in the evening, Saturn is setting in the early morning hours, and we return to the Mauna Kea summit to learn about the discovery of a planetary nebula called the Space Butterfly as HPR All Things Considered Host Dave Lawrence speaks with Christopher Phillips from the Mauna Kea Astronomy Outreach Committee for this week’s Stargazer.

The planets Venus, Jupiter and Saturn are all visible this week, and we return to the Mauna Kea summit for a collaborative discovery relating to a black hole as HPR All Things Considered Host Dave Lawrence speaks with Christopher Phillips from the Mauna Kea Astronomy Outreach Committee for this week’s Stargazer.

Hawaii Land Board Votes to Limit Mauna Kea Access

Jul 12, 2015
Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

The Board of Land and Natural Resources voted 5-2 to approve an emergency rule that would restrict access on Mauna Kea and forbid camping materials. State officials made the decision after more than 8 hours of public testimony. HPR’s Molly Solomon was there and has this report.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

The University of Hawaii has released logs kept by Mauna Kea rangers and employees at the visitors center. The documents come ahead of today's Board of Land and Natural Resources meeting. On the agenda is an emergency rule that would prohibit camping and restrict nighttime access on the mountain.

The logs allege concerns of safety, threats to natural resources, and hostile comments towards visitors and employees since the protests against the Thirty Meter Telescope began back in March.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

State officials are proposing emergency rules that would prohibit camping and restrict nighttime access on Mauna Kea. Hawai‘i’s Board of Land and Natural Resources plans to vote on the issue this Friday. But opponents say the new rules unfairly target TMT protesters and would violate the rights of cultural practitioners. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports.

Noe Tanigawa

 

  

The very first telescope on Haleakalā was completed in 1958, and used for satellite tracking.  Three years later, 18 acres of ceded land at the summit were set aside for astronomy, becoming the Haleakalā High Altitude Observatory Site with the University of Hawai‘i as owner/manager.  Currently there are ten facilities on the mountain and another, a cutting edge solar telescope, is underway.  HPR’s Noe Tanigawa reports on the controversy over its construction.

 

    

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

Protests have once again delayed construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope atop Mauna Kea. Building was slated to resume Wednesday, but a clash between law enforcement and protesters blocking the road, prevented construction crews from reaching the site. HPR’s Molly Solomon has more.

TMT Construction atop Mauna Kea to Resume Wednesday

Jun 21, 2015
Thirty Meter Telescope Corp.
Thirty Meter Telescope Corp.

Construction is about to resume on Mauna Kea. TMT partners announced they plan to resume building the controversial Thirty Meter Telescope starting Wednesday.

Michael Bolte is a TMT board member and an astronomy professor at UC Santa Cruz. He says Governor Ige's recent support of the project and his management plan for the mountain prompted the decision to restart construction. "We felt it was a nice vindication of our approach," said Bolte. "We're ready to get started again."

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

The Hawai‘i Supreme Court has agreed to hear the ongoing court case involving the Thirty Meter Telescope proposed for Mauna Kea.  Richard Wurdeman, attorney for the Mauna Kea Hui, says this move indicates the court views the issues involved as important for the state.

UH Outlines Path Forward for Mauna Kea

Jun 1, 2015
Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

It’s been one week since Governor David Ige told the University of Hawaii to do a better job of managing land atop Mauna Kea. HPR’s Molly Solomon spoke with school officials who laid out a tentative plan for future changes on the mountain.

The University of Hawaii's full statement on the management plan for Mauna Kea can be found here.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

25% of the telescopes atop Mauna Kea may come down in the next decade. That’s part of the policy change Governor Ige outlined earlier this week on the future management of the mountain. HPR’s Molly Solomon has more on how this will impact the astronomy community.

Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory Corp.
Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory Corp.

Hawaii Governor David Ige announced his support of the controversial Thirty Meter Telescope and believes the project may proceed with construction. He also laid out his plan for future development on Mauna Kea, calling on the University of Hawai‘i to be better stewards of the land. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports on reaction to the Governor’s remarks.

Governor Ige's prepared comments on Mauna Kea:

Wayne Yoshioka

The Governor announced major changes in the stewardship of Mauna Kea on Hawai’i island today.  HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka attended the news conference and filed this report.

How The Debate Over TMT Prompted a Problematic Email

May 15, 2015
Thirty Meter Telescope Corp.
Thirty Meter Telescope Corp.

The controversial Thirty Meter Telescope has sparked debate in astronomy departments across the country. Apart from the discussion about the protest itself, questions are being raised about diversity within the astronomy community. HPR’s Molly Solomon takes us to one university.

Scientists on TMT: Not Of One Mind

May 7, 2015
Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory Corp.
Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory Corp.

The ongoing debate over the controversial Thirty Meter Telescope has reverberated beyond the state. Among astronomers, the $1.4 billion project planned atop Mauna Kea has been a point of contention. HPR’s Molly Solomon spoke with a spectrum of opinions and has this report.

OHA Rescinds Support for Thirty Meter Telescope

Apr 30, 2015
Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs have rescinded their support for the development of the Thirty Meter Telescope atop Mauna Kea, changing their 2009 stance on the controversial project. But the board stopped short of opposing the telescope entirely. HPR’s Molly Solomon explains.

In a statement from the TMT International Observatory Board, Chair Henry Yang says “We are naturally disappointed that the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has changed its position. However, we are by no means discouraged.” The TMT team plans to continue dialog and engagement with OHA and all other stakeholders.

In Hawaii, a battle is going on over the future of a mountaintop. Native Hawaiians say it's sacred ground, while astronomers say it's the best place in the world to build a massive, 18-story telescope.

This is not simply a story of religion versus science. Activists consider the construction of a giant telescope on the island of Hawaii to be a desecration of their sacred land.

Mauna Kea: a Mountain in Discord

Apr 13, 2015
Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

While construction on the Thirty Meter Telescope remains stalled for now, protesters of the project continue to hold vigil on Mauna Kea. What happens next remains unclear.

On an overcast morning, caravans of dancers make their way 9,200 feet above sea level, to the site of the protester’s camp, across the street from Mauna Kea’s Visitor Information Center. Many of them are fresh off the stage from Merrie Monarch, the three-day hula competition in Hilo.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

Opponents of the Thirty Meter Telescope planned for Mauna Kea brought their concerns to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Thursday.

A handful of protesters asked the Board of Trustees to rescind support for the $1.3 billion project. ‘Ilima Long is with the organization MANA, or Movement for Aloha No ka Aina

In 2009, OHA’s board unanimously adopted a resolution in support of the TMT. And last July, trustees decided not to file a request for a contested case hearing in opposition to the Thirty Meter Telescope sublease.

Wayne Yoshioka

The Governor conducted a news conference yesterday to address a number of state-wide issues.   HPR’s Wayne Yoshioka was there and files this report.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

Hawai‘i Governor David Ige has announced a week-long "time out" for construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea. In a press conference Tuesday afternoon, Governor Ige says he came to this decision after speaking with major stakeholders in the project.

Ige says he plans to use this time for discussion with protestors, who have had a presence on the mountain for the past two weeks. Astronomers call Mauna Kea’s summit one of the world’s best places to see the stars. While environmentalists and native Hawaiians say the sacred ground is in need of protection.

Natalie Kurashima

Dozens of arrests were made yesterday on Mauna Kea Access Road. Protesters who oppose the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope have been on the mountain for the past week, blocking access to construction crews. HPR’s Molly Solomon has this update.

Mauna Kea Web Cam
Mauna Kea Web Cam

Blizzard like conditions have delayed construction of one of the world’s largest telescopes. The $1.3 billion Thirty Meter Telescope is being built on the summit of Mauna Kea. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports that snow, ice and heavy winds have put the project on hold.

astropixels.com
astropixels.com

The University of Hawaii Astronomy program has picked up a new telescope.

hawaiicountymayor.com
hawaiicountymayor.com

  There's an interesting shift of property ownership that's taking place on Hawaii Island this summer.  It's a 20 acre state park that's shifting to a facility under control of Hawaii County.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has the story.

Credit: Gemini Observatory
Credit: Gemini Observatory

 For most of the year, scientists at the Mauna Kea observatories spend their time watching the skies.  But for the past decade, on occasion that focus has shifted to the classrooms of Hawaii Island.  And it's included astronomers from around the country.  HPR's Sherry Bracken reports.

www.tmt.org
www.tmt.org

The UH Board of Regents recently approved a sublease for the planned Thirty Meter Telescope atop Mauna Kea on Hawai’i island. HPR’s Noe Tanigawa reports that this advances the project but does not clear the way for construction to begin.

For more information on KAHEA, check out their website

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