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Sign-On in Support of the Protection of Waikalua Loko Iʻa

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Hawaiian Islands Land Trust (HILT) and Pacific American Foundation (PAF), Waikalua Loko Iʻa’s non-profit landowner and steward, have partnered to permanently protect the two fishponds of Waikalua at Kāneʻohe Bay, with a perpetual conservation easement. A perpetual conservation easement is a voluntary and permanent legal agreement between a landowner and a land trust or government agency, limiting future land use, and is recorded on title. The perpetual conservation easement over Waikalua Loko Iʻa (Waikalua or Waikalua Fishponds Complex) will ensure protection of the fishponds in perpetuity. After 25 years of caring for Waikalua’s fishponds, its caretaker PAF, was able to purchase the property in 2019. To complete the protection of these fishponds, the last step is securing a perpetual conservation easement.

HILT is currently in the stage of seeking public open space funds and humbly request your support of HILT’s initiative in applying for funding from the City & County of Honolulu’s Clean Water and Natural Lands Fund, as well as other conservation easement funding sources. The following are a few highlights of HILT’s Waikalua Fishponds Complex project:

  • The acquisition of this conservation easement provides a rare opportunity to permanently protect a threatened coastline and estuary, while simultaneously ensuring the restoration and stewardship work at Waikalua Loko Iʻa can continue. The restoration and stewardship of Waikalua Loko Iʻa by Pacific American Foundation, the Kāneʻohe community, and volunteers and students from all over Hawaiʻi and beyond, directly improves the health of the two fishponds and the Kāneʻohe Bay ecosystem.
  • The conservation easement will prohibit subdivision and development of an ancient Hawaiian fishponds’ complex in an urban area, ensuring the cultural integrity of Waikalua Loko Iʻa.
  • The conservation easement safeguards Pacific American Foundation’s current commitment to provide: access for community ʻāina-based learning, managed access to Kāneʻohe Bay, and for the continuance of cultural gathering and fishpond-related cultural practices to continue through the generations for Kāneʻohe families.

HILT is a Hawaiʻi 501(c)(3) nonprofit land trust that protects and stewards the lands that sustain Hawaiʻi, and perpetuates Hawaiian values by connecting people to ʻāina. Our current land protection priorities consist of Hawaiian cultural landscapes, coastlines, and lands that produce healthy food for Hawaiʻi’s people. HILT has protected over 21,000 acres throughout Hawaiʻi, owns and stewards 7 preserves, holds 52 conservation easements restricting private lands, and connects thousands of people annually to wahi kūpuna or places of Hawaiʻi’s ancestral past.

By signing this petition, you are sharing your support of Hawaiian Islands Land Trust and Pacific American Foundation’s initiative to raise public funding for a conservation easement in order to ensure the fishponds of Waikalua are protected in perpetuity.

Mahalo nui loa!

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