Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Friend or Foam Series on Civil Beat


Are you a reader of the local web news organization Civil Beat?


In recent months, their investigative team has worked on an awareness raising and discussion worthy series called Friend or Foam: Why do we use so much plastic foam in Hawaii? Civil Beat examines who makes plastic foam, how it impacts the environment, and how people are trying to do away with it. They also cover the policy issues behind bringing your own container.


We've asked our members to comment on different parts of the series. Today we are proud to share a short editorial as a Community Voice contribution. Please log on to share your reactions and solutions.

Friend or Foam: The Perils of Single-Use Plastics   
~Plastic is an amazing material, but impossible to dispose of in a sustainable way...

Monday, December 5, 2011

Dec. 3rd Clean Up Results

Saturday was another great turn out for our quarterly clean up at Kailua Beach Park!
The Kailua team of 60+ volunteers collected 180 pounds of marine debris and litter from the Beach Park and surrounding shoreline in under 2 hours! This includes 40 pounds of recyclables and 13 pounds of beach plastic going to method for upcycling into about 1000 bottles. (That's 100% post consumer waste, no new plastic!) 

Meanwhile, on the North Shore our Plastic Free Haleiwa team in Kahuku collected 1208 pounds of marine debris including 200 pounds for method! 
We can't thank our awesome volunteers enough. We offer a special appreciation to all the young folks who make our beach clean ups so special. Saturday we had teams from the Girls Scouts, Lanikai Elementary, Keolu Elementary, St. Anthony's School, and Le Jardin Academy.




We are also proud to have such great partners for support and as contributors to the prize raffle. Please thank Kailua Sailboards and Kayaks, Muumuu Heaven, Global Village, TikiMaster.com, Unlucky HI and Ocean Devotion Hawaii.

More photos on our Facebook page! 

The next clean up will be April 14th with Surfrider. Stay tuned for details.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Dec. 3rd Beach Clean-Up and No Waste Challenge

Join us Saturday, December 3rd
10am-12pm
Kailua Beach Park

Meet near the Canoe House, Main Parking Lot, East of Buzz’s Restaurant. Join us for the clean up at 10am and stay for the trash weigh-in and a low-waste potluck lunch at 12pm. RSVP on Facebook.

We'll have a raffle with prizes from local sponsors such as Kailua Sailboards and Kayaks, Muumuu Heaven, Global Village, TikiMaster.com, and more...We'll be working with a new partner too: Ocean Devotion Hawaii.  Download the flier here. 

What to bring: sunscreen, hat, work gloves, old colanders, water bottles, friends, and a great attitude! Bring any plastic grocery bags you have to give them a second life as trash bags. If your interested, also bring a low-impact lunch box or food to share. That means reusable plates and utensils too. We'll have coolers and other supplies.

We'll also be collecting plastic for Method Soap's new post-consumer recycled bottles made from gyre plastic pollution!


Ocean Plastic 2011 from People Against Dirty on Vimeo.


This effort is part of the 2011 No Waste Challenge.
November 27-December 26 is Kanu Hawaii's No Waste Challenge: a time to learn about the waste stream in Hawaii and renew personal, household, and business commitments to reducing our waste footprint through out the year. We'll be sharing educational items, events, and projects to take part in. The last week is the One Week -One Bag challenge. Learn more at the link, commit to change, and share a journal.

Another Plastic Free Hawaii clean up will be taking place that day in Kahuku! We'll be cleaning Punamano Unit James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge, Marconi Road -Kam Hwy. Meet at Kahuku High School at 9am for instructions.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Nov. - Dec. Calendar of Events 2011



Plastic Free Hawaii is involved in a number of upcoming events for 2011. We hope you and yours can join us!

See the details are below and stay tuned for updates as we get closer to the Kanu Hawaii Waste Challenge and the December 3rd Beach Clean up.


November 17, 6:00PM-8:00PM - "Bag It" film screening at Sunset Beach Elementary School, email plasticfree@kokuahawaiifoundation.org for more information.

November 19, 8:00AM-12:15PM - 7th Annual North Shore Beach Clean Up
Hundreds of folks are expected for this yearly gathering and clean-up with Da Hui and Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii. More info on Facebook. We'll be collecting plastic for Method Soap's new post-consumer recycled bottles made from gyre plastic pollution!

November 27-December 26, Kanu Hawaii Waste Challenge
It's that time again and we are very excited to be helping out with this year's challenge. It's a time to learn about the waste stream in Hawaii and renew personal, household, and business commitments to reducing our waste footprint through out the year. We'll be sharing educational items, events, and projects to take part in. The last week is the One Week -One Bag challenge, so get ready.

November 29, 6-8PM, Waste Forum at Farrington High School.
In conjunction with Plastic Free Hawaii and Kanu Hawaii, there will be a screening of "Bag It" and a discussion forum following the film with special guests. Email plasticfree@kokuahawaiifoundation.org for more information.

December 3,  Plastic Free Hawaii Beach Clean ups
As a part of the Waste Challenge, our parent organization Plastic Free Hawaii (Kokua Hawaii Foundation) will be hosting 2 community clean-ups on this day in Haleiwa and Kailua. We'll be weighing the trash and communing with a low-waste potluck at Kailua Beach Park 10am-12pm as usual! More details to come. We'll also be collecting plastic for Method Soap's new post-consumer recycled bottles made from gyre plastic pollution!

TBA December-Finally another HI-5 bins making workshop with Eating in Public! This time at Malama Learning Center at Kapolei High School.

Looking forward...The 2012 legislative session is right around the corner. We'll be working with partners such as Surfrider and the Sierra Club to promote a Bag Bill. We'll have all the updates here on the blog.

Other Notable Events in our Plastic Free Community:
Let us know about any other #plasticfree events in your community!

Monday, September 19, 2011

September 2011 ICC Beach Cleanup Tally

We owe a huge debt of gratitude to all who pitched in to make Saturday's clean up a success. Volunteers smiled through the rain to collect marine debris and celebrate with a low-impact potluck. This effort makes for a total of 700 pounds of beach cleaning power since last September!
Here are the tallied results from volunteer data sheets. We collected and sorted 150 POUNDS in less than 2 hours! All the data from this international event will go first to the City and County of Honolulu's "Get the Drift and Bag It" program and then be posted on the Ocean Conservancy website in the following months. You can also compare this to last year's results.

10 Paper bags                                     108 Cups, plates or cutlery
75 Plastic bags                                    252 Food wrappers
7 Balloons                                           25 Pull tabs
21 Plastic beverage bottles                   6 Batteries
22 Glass bottles                                   370 Straws and stirrers
36 Beverage cans                                18 Toys
411 Caps or lids                                   49 Items of clothing, shoes 
500+ Bits of micro-debris                      2 Motor oil containers
84 Fishing line, net, or rope segments     3 light bulbs                                        
14 Floats, traps, lures                                  
13 Pieces of plastic sheeting                 2426 Cigarette butts                                
6 Cigarette lighters                               3 Diapers
26 Cigar tips                                        13 Tobacco wrappers        
1 bike                                                  2 bike tire tubes
12 pieces of cinder block                       5 car parts
7 misc. building materials                       4 misc. office supplies            
125 misc. paper products                   
115 misc. toiletries including band-aids and baby wipes

We send out thanks to all the individuals, groups, sponsors, and businesses that came together for PFK's project. Mahalo to Hawaii ZTA Alumnae Chapter, St. Anthony School Green Club, and Hawaiian Island Twisters for sending volunteers. Mahalo to Global Village, Kailua Sailboards and Kayaks, Whole Foods, Muumuu Heaven, and Kim Houston of NYR Organics for helping make the raffle extra special. Support our partnering plastic-free businesses and tell them thank you!

There is always more to be cleaned up in these high traffic areas, so we encourage you to pick up a bag of trash every time you visit! Volunteers noted the massive amount of litter within the parks. Remind your friends to dispose of their trash, especially cigarettes, properly. Cigarette filters are actually partially plastic and leach toxic chemicals into the ground and water. Yuck!

Finally, we hope the clean up was also a learning experience for you. This was the 26th Annual International Coastal Cleanup. Nearly 145 million pounds of trash later, Ocean Conservancy has learned that removal alone is not enough. The real solution is stopping trash from reaching our waterways and the ocean in the first place. Check out our Act and Learn pages for ways you can make your household a little less plastic. 

More photos on our Facebook page!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

International Coastal Cleanup Sept. 17th

We will see you Saturday, September 17th, Kailua Beach Park, 10am-12pm

Over the past 25 years, Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup has become the world’s largest volunteer effort for ocean health. Nearly nine million volunteers from 152 countries and locations have cleaned 145 million pounds of trash from the shores of lakes, streams, rivers, and the ocean on just one day each year. We will be sorting and counting our trash. This is the only country by country, state by state, city by city record of marine debris pollution. More on the ICC at Ocean Conservancy. Clean-ups will be going on at sites across Hawaii Sept. 17th as part of "Get The Drift & Bag It," Hawaii's contribution to the ICC.
Won't you join us?
When: Saturday, September 17th, 10:00am: Check-in, 12:00pm: Join us for the trash tally and a low-impact potluck lunch. Stay for raffle prizes from local partners such as Whole Foods, Muumuu Heaven, and Global Village!
Where: Kailua Beach Park, 450 Kawailoa Road, Meet near the Canoe House, Main Parking Lot, East of Buzz’s Restaurant
What to bring: sunscreen, hat, work gloves, old colanders, water bottles, friends, and a great attitude! Bring any plastic grocery bags you have to give them a second life as trash bags. If your interested, also bring a low-impact lunch box or food to share. We'll have coolers and other supplies.
RSVP on Facebook

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Join us for BAG IT! Tues, July 26 at 6:30

PFK and Kokua Hawaii Foundation are proud to help with a screening of "Bag It" for the Kailua community. All are welcome. We'll have refreshments, and the first 30 families get a free tote from Whole Foods!

Tuesday, July 26th 6:30 to 8:30 at Huakailani School
upstairs at 146 Hekili Street RSVP on Facebook


Bag It has been garnering awards at film festivals across the nation. What started as a documentary about plastic bags evolved into a wholesale investigation into plastics and their effect on our waterways, oceans, and even our bodies. Join the Bag It movement and decide for yourself how plastic your life will be.



Bag It Intro from Suzan Beraza on Vimeo.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Upcoming PFK Events

Here's what's coming up. Details to follow as the dates approach.

Tuesday, July 26th  
We're excited for another "BAG IT" screening, this time at Huakailani School on Hekili St. 6:30-8:30pm, families welcome!

Saturday, September 17th 
Join us for a beach clean-up and low impact potluck. We'll be collecting data for the the annual International Coastal Clean-Up for the Ocean Conservancy. We'll be working between Kalama Beach Park and Kailua Beach Park, 10am-12pm.

We hope to see you there! Until then stay cool!

Friday, May 6, 2011

May 14 Beach Clean-Up with Surfrider Oahu

Saturday, May 14th -- Beach Clean-up and Low Impact Potluck
  • 10am-12pm, meet at the boat ramp between Lanikai and Kailua Beach Park
  • Surfrider Foundation will be there! 
  • Local supporters Pinky's, Muumuu Heaven, and Kailua Verde will be providing goodies such as pizza and raffle items! 
  • RSVP here on Facebook!

 What to bring: sunscreen, hat, work gloves, old colanders, water bottles, friends, and a great attitude! Bring any plastic grocery bags you have to give them a second life as trash bags. If your interested, also bring a low-impact lunch box or food to share. That means reusable plates and utensils too! We'll have coolers and other supplies.

Tell your buddies! See you there!


Thursday, May 5, 2011

May Update: What's next for PFK?

Aloha Kailua and PFK Community,
It was a busy legislative session for Hawaii, and we were closely following a number of environmental bills. You can catch up with all the details at the Sierra Club's Capitol Watch website. Unfortunately, SB1363, which would have imposed a small fee on disposable bags at the check out counter, actualizing the buried cost of plastic bags, failed to make it to a final vote. We really wanted to see our progressive state take action to reduce the amount of single-use plastic bags distributed in Hawaii.

But there is good news! For one, the postponement of a statewide measure leaves bag bans in place on Maui and Kauai. Moreover, this session has galvanized the need for community campaigns like Plastic Free Kailua. Many of you attended Surfrider's screenings of "Bag It," the Kanu Hawaii Rotunda Round-ups, and followed all the Rise Above Plastics news. We saw so much awareness and energy emerge, especially in Kailua.

Moving forward, our message remains the same: as consumers and retailers, we ultimately have the power to reduce plastic in our beautiful piece of the world through our thoughtful commitments.

Join us! As a small, impassioned group of local consumers and business owners, PFK is about to reboot for a summer campaign. With the help of the Le Jardin Academy Wild Kids, a lot of progress was made in April. This month we will be getting in touch with a number of Kailua businesses and officially adding them to our list of coalition members.

We need your support! This is a community effort. We invite all of you to encourage the businesses you frequent to move toward going plastic free and vocally applaud their current efforts. As customers, your word and approval make a large difference. Don't forget to direct businesses to PFK so we can report on the collective impact happening in Kailua!

PFK wants to hear from you! Get in touch with us about what you do at home to reduce plastic, tell us about events you want organized, or share your concerns and ideas. Spread the word among your peers about making plastic-free commitments. We are always looking for energetic volunteers.


Mark your calendars for our next community event!
Saturday, May 14th -- Beach Clean-up and Low Impact Potluck
10am-12pm, meet at the boat ramp between Lanikai and Kailua Beach Park
Surfrider Foundation will be there! 
Local supporters Pinky's, Muumuu Heaven, and Kailua Verde will be providing goodies! 
More details to follow. RSVP here on Facebook!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

JOIN US! for a "Bag It" Screening at Le Jardin Academy Kailua

PFK is pleased to tell you about exciting events happening at Le Jardin Academy in Kailua and announce a budding partnership with their stellar environmental group The Wild Kids!

We recently saw the Wild Kids in action creating the REFUSE art installation currently displayed outside of Muumuu Heaven. Inspired by Earth Day, the amazing film "Bag It," and the push to rid our state of single-use plastics at the checkout counter, the Wild Kids have embarked on a grassroots campaign. They are asking local Kailua businesses to ditch the plastic bags by Earth Day, April 22nd. They are also creating another REFUSE mural on campus.

To raise awareness for their campaign, PFK, along with Surfrider Foundation, is proud to help with a screening of "Bag It" for the Kailua community! All are welcome!

Tuesday, April 19th 6:30 to 8:30 at Le Jardin Academy




Bag It Intro from Suzan Beraza on Vimeo.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

HI Plastic Bag Legislation Updated 4.28.2011

We’ve reached a make or break moment! Here's the latest on what YOU can do to help reduce plastic bags in Hawaii. It’s really easy – just an email to sens@capitol.hawaii.gov, reps@capitol.hawaii.gov -- more details at the link or quoted below!
UPDATE 4/15: The bill passed with amendments in the House and is sent back to the Senate for debate again...It's not too late to send in support by following directions below!

UPDATE 4/28: From HI Sierra Club Capitol Watch: The next 48 hours could decide whether Hawaii significantly reduces the approximately 500 million single-use paper and plastic bags used each year. Senate Bill 1363, which places a small fee on most paper and plastic bags, is on the brink of passage. But we need the backing of Representative Marcus Oshiro to move forward. Taking action is really easy – you can call Representative Marcus Oshiro at 586-6200 (preferred). Or you can email all of the conference committee members.
repmckelvey@capitol.hawaii.gov, repcoffman@capitol.hawaii.gov, rephashem@capitol.hawaii.gov, repmoshiro@capitol.hawaii.gov, repthielen@capitol.hawaii.gov, reptokioka@capitol.hawaii.gov
senbaker@capitol.hawaii.gov, senfukunaga@capitol.hawaii.gov, sengabbard@capitol.hawaii.gov
sendige@capitol.hawaii.gov, senenglish@capitol.hawaii.gov, senkahele@capitol.hawaii.gov







Once again Hawaii has an opportunity to lead America on an important environmental issue: we could be the first state in the nation to significantly reduce consumption of throwaway paper and plastic bags.
We’ve reached a make or break moment – a pivotal point where a little public action could be enough to secure victory. The bill to impose a fee on most single-use paper or plastic bags, is really close to passage.
We already pay for these bags, but the cost is hidden in the overall price of the products we buy. Experience in other states and countries has proved that once people are made aware of what these bags cost – by being required to pay a small fee per bag at the checkout- they change their behavior and start to employ reusable bags.
The bill has just one last committee to pass, Finance, and then a vote in the full House and Senate. We think 500 emails, phone calls, or public calls for its passage would probably be enough to get it passed. Wouldn’t you like to be one of those 500?
It’s really easy – just email all the Senators and all the members of the House of Representatives with a single click on each of these links below:
sens@capitol.hawaii.gov

reps@capitol.hawaii.gov

Say something along these lines:
  • I strongly support legislative efforts to reduce the use of paper and plastic bags.
  • Over 12,000 plastic bags are used in the United States every second.
  • In this country we consume an astounding 100 billion throwaway plastic bags every year made from some 12 million barrels of oil.
  • These bags clog our streets, foul our open space, pollute our fragile marine environment and kill thousands of animals every year.
Please pass SB1363 and protect Hawaii's fragile environment from the millions of bags wasted each year.

More information can also be found at the Capitol Watch site or on our Legislative Tracker.

P.S. In the time it has taken you to read this message, about 500,000 throwaway plastic bags have been used.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Refuse: Exhibition and Awareness at Mu'uMu'u Heaven + more...














There is an exceptionally fun day planned for this Saturday, March 19th at PFK partner Mu‘umu‘u Heaven. Starting at 10am that morning, they will be helping to coordinate an art installation  using plastic rubbish collected from the Surfrider Foundation Oahu Chapter's beach cleanup that many of you participated in last Sunday in Waimanalo.

Dianna Cohen, artist and environmental activist, is spearheading the installation with the help of MH's own Aerin Vanhalla and a group of young environmentalists in training (i.e., Kids) from the local area. If you want to come help out or even just watch it all go down, come by Saturday morning around 10am - at Mu‘umu‘u Heaven in Kailua.

You may want to just pack a change of clothes, hit the beach and make a whole day of it in Kailua this Saturday, because they are really kicking into high gear with a big reception for this installation and other related art pieces from 6-8pm. They'll have pupu's from Town restaurant, refreshments - it should be a very fun and inspiring night.



This celebration is in advance of the 5th International Marine Debris Conference happening in Honolulu next week. Kokua Hawaii Foundation and Plastic Free Hawaii will be helping with presentations and events so check it out. This conference will highlight research advances, allow sharing of strategies and best practices to assess, reduce, and prevent the impacts of marine debris, and provide an opportunity for the development of specific bilateral or multi-country strategies.


A number of fun events are happening next week in honor of the conference. Monday, March 21 Surfrider Foundation is showing acclaimed documentary Bag It at The Venue at 7pm! More details on facebook. They are also holding a benefit and Rise Above Plastics Party at the Waikiki Aquarium Saturday, March 26th, 6-9pm.

Monday, March 7, 2011

HI Bag Ban Legislation Update

Here's the latest from Sierra Club Hawai'i's Capitol Watch 2011.
So we've reached the half way mark in this session of the Legislature. Bills that have made it through hearings in one body must pass a vote on the floor and then cross over and run the gauntlet in the other body. All this week legislators will be voting which bills to send over.
Club Director Robert Harris has placed SB1363 on his Top 10 list of bills to watch!
SB 1363 SD2 - Requires businesses to collect a fee for the distribution of single use bags
Support!
This measure creates a fee for all single-use bags, paper or plastic, and gives stores a reason to encourage their customers to use less harmful bags. This simple fee would help make shoppers aware of the economic and environmental costs of single-use bags in Hawai‘i. Single-use bags are simply not in Hawai`i’s sustainable future and strong efforts should be made to discourage their continued use.
Single use bags are an expense that is not directly visible to consumers, but an average supermarket can spend $1,500 to $6,000 a month to provide them. By assessing a fee, we actualize this cost, create a disincentive to the continued use of the bags, and provide the State with needed income for sorely underfunded environmental programs.
For more info contact Opala Captain Joy Leilei Shih at joyshih@hawaii.edu
UPDATE: Needs testimony by 3/21 at 11am
3/18/2011HBill scheduled to be heard by EEP/ERB on Tuesday, 03-22-11 10:40AM in House conference room 312.


 
Also still in the running is SB1059. Check out the Sierra Club's links to contact your representatives and garner support. Help make Hawaii the first state to pass comprehensive plastic bag banning legislation.

PFK featured in March GREEN: Hawai'i's Sustainable Living Magazine

Check us out on page 15, with some supporting words from our good friends at Mu'uMu'u Heaven!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

My beach clean-up experience

My name is Milo Osterman and I am 14 years old. I did community outreach hours for my school, Castle High. I cleaned Kailua beach park and the Ahuimanu Stream area. On March 1st I went to Kailua Beach Park where I picked up a bag of trash in two and a half hours. I also did this last December with PFK when there was a much higher tide, and because of the tide, there was a much larger amount of litter. In December, I found a wide variety of trash including cigarettes, pieces of plastic, and other small discarded garbage. Most of that likely washed up from the ocean, but this month there were things left behind by people at the beach such as toy shovels, broken buckets, and Frisbees, and other litter.

Even though there wasn't as much garbage as last time, it is still surprising to me that there is so much plastic among other rubbish being left on the beaches. Anyone reading this should remember that plastic never goes away and be mindful each time you go to the beach as to not leave anything behind.

Spread the word and get involved in your community! Here are some ways you can help the Plastic-Free Kailua coalition: take a reusable shopping bag for all types of shopping, carry a reusable water bottle instead of buying the disposable bottled water, be mindful of plastic packaging, and choose products that use less of it.
WAY TO GO MILO! As always, PFK invites other guest blog authors and young volunteers to get involved in our campaigns and beach clean-ups! Email us anytime!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

PFK Art Contest Winners Announced!

PFK was overwhelmed by the creative entries from our first school project. A big thank you to all the Plastic Free Keiki who worked hard to show their passion and concern for our piece of Oahu. The variety of imagery was amazing and made the judging extremely difficult.

We want to send out a special congratulations to the top 5 submissions. These young artists will receive a special certificate and gift cards to California Pizza Kitchen as a thank you for their stunning work. PFK will feature these and other submissions in our educational displays throughout the year.

And now to important business: the winners are…

1st Place:
Lia Posatiere (Marine Debris Collage)
Age 10, Grade 5
Kainalu Elementary School












Honorable Mention:
Rahma Benotmane (Mokes Watercolor)
Age 12, Grade 7
Kailua Intermediate School















Honorable Mention:
Kaitlin Schell (Ocean Scene)
Age 12, Grade 7
Kailua Intermediate School



Honorable Mention:
Sammi Larson (Curb Bin)
Age 12, Grade 7
Kailua Intermediate School














Honorable Mention:
Tristan Clapp (Recycle Mokes Logo)
Age 12, Grade 7
Kailua Intermediate School

Monday, February 7, 2011

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Hawai'i Plastic Bag Legislation this session! UPDATED 3.19.11

Below is an overview of the plastic bag bills in the legislature right now. We also want to introduce you to Sierra Club's Capitol Watch website, which will be tracking these bills under the category of "Opala" (Trash) and other bills that affect our oceans under the category of "Marine Coastal." Please bookmark this website because we're partnering with Sierra to make this our one-stop shop for checking on the status of bills, learning about their content and submitting online testimony.

If you want to learn more about the legislative process and submitting testimony, Kanu Hawaii is hosting fun & informal Rotunda Roundup Workshops Thursdays at 5:30pm at the Capitol. This part of their Citizen Challenge 2011. They have invited Stuart Coleman of Surfrider Foundation to talk about the plastic bag bills, what we can do to advance them and reduce plastic pollution in Hawaii on 2/3. Robert Harris of the Hawaii Sierra Club will speak 2/10.

Stuart writes: "We have a lot of momentum to pass one of the bag bills this session--so let's rally and make it happen! We are part of a national and local movement that includes Surfrider, Sierra Club, Kokua HI, Kanu HI, Plastic-Free HI, the Plastic Pollution Coalition and many other groups and individuals."

Here's a list of the bag bills this session:

SB1363 -- Requires businesses to collect an offset fee for distribution of every non-reusable checkout bag. Provides for the department of health to collect seventy-five per cent of offset fee to be used for administration and enforcement. Allows businesses to retain twenty-five per cent of offset fee as taxable income. Exempts offset fee from excise tax. **NEEDS TESTIMONY NOW**
3/18/2011HBill scheduled to be heard by EEP/ERB on Tuesday, 03-22-11 10:40AM in House conference room 312.
This measure creates a fee for all single-use bags, paper or plastic, and gives stores a reason to encourage their customers to use less harmful bags. This simple fee would help make shoppers aware of the economic and environmental costs of single-use bags in Hawai‘i. Single-use bags are simply not in Hawai`i’s sustainable future and strong efforts should be made to discourage their continued use. Single use bags are an expense that is not directly visible to consumers, but an average supermarket can spend $1,500 to $6,000 a month to provide them. By assessing a fee, we actualize this cost, create a disincentive to the continued use of the bags, and provide the State with needed income for sorely underfunded environmental programs. For more info contact Opala Captain Joy Leilei Shih at joyshih@hawaii.edu
 SB1059 - This bill is a plastic bag ban that allows stores to still distribute paper or biodegradable plastic bags. It currently states that beginning on July 1, 2012, businesses with annual gross sales of over $300,000 are prohibited from distributing single-use plastic checkout bags to their customers at the point of sale.e.

3/8/2011HReceived from Senate (Sen. Com. No. 234) in amended form (SD 2).
3/10/2011HPass First Reading
3/10/2011HReferred to EEP, ERB, FIN, referral sheet 33


    SB1370 – This ban bill would require businesses with annual gross sales of over $250,000 to switch to biodegradable plastic bags beginning on January 1, 2012.

    HB891 - This bill would ban non-compostable plastic bags beginning January 1, 2013 for all business operators of businesses with annual gross sales of $500,000 or more.

    HB998 – This bill would require businesses to collect a 10 cent fee on disposable plastic checkout bags beginning January 1, 2012. The business would keep half of the fee, and the other half would go towards the Energy sustainability special fund.
    2/18/2011HPassed Second Reading as amended in HD 1 and referred to the committee(s) on FIN 
    3/03/2011 We'd like a House Bill to increase the chances of success! HB 998 has not been scheduled for its final hearing, and this is the last week to do so before it dies. Please CALL Rep. Oshiro's office TODAY and ask him to schedule a Finance Committee hearing 808-586-6200. 

    HB1401 – This bill mandates the use of recyclable, compostable, and reusable checkout bags by businesses with annual gross sales over $250,000 beginning January 1, 2012.

    HB1601 - This bill states that beginning on July 1, 2012, all business operators are prohibited from providing plastic carryout bags to consumers at the point of sale, including compostable plastic bags, but still allowing paper bags.

    Note: Most bills still allow plastic bags necessary for produce, grains, newspapers, dry-cleaning, prescriptions and the like. As currently stated in the bills, a statewide fee would not overturn the bans already in place in Maui and Kauai counties.

    You can testify by going to www.capitol.hawaii.gov/emailtestimony/ and referencing the bill number, your name, address, and the date/time of the hearing.

    Sample Testimony: (Make it your own and add specific details that you support about each bill. You can mention that you are a member of PFH and want to reduce plastic pollution and the amount of waste going into our environment, oceans and landfills.) See/ Add more in Comments below...

    I am writing to comment in support of Bill -----. Regulating single-use plastic bags will help make Hawaii a model state for sustainable change.

    Hawaii, especially Oahu, is at a crucial moment for waste management. Despite the efforts of the H-Power waste-to-energy program, high rates of recycling, and a high landfill diversion rate, our facilities and landfills are overwhelmed. Legislating source reduction and behavior changing regulation is the targeted solution.

    The harmful cost of single-use plastics stretches from the oil it takes to produce it, to the health of the consumer, to the cost of disposal, and finally to the marine ecosystems it wrecks. Plastic is a material that the Earth cannot digest. Almost every bit of plastic that has ever been created still exists. Once discarded in the environment, plastic breaks down into smaller and smaller particles. Patches of plastic pollution cover millions of square miles of ocean near Hawaii. Tragically, this plastic also ends up in the stomachs of marine birds and animals. Moreover, the creation and distribution of plastic products increases our polluting carbon emissions and dependence on fossil fuels.

    Reusable bags allow new avenues for marketing and save the retailer and consumer money. Consumers actually pay hidden costs for so-called free bags. Further, reducing the consumption of single-use plastic bags will bring in money for our state and save money in clean-up costs. The taxpayer cost to subsidize the recycling, collection, and disposal of plastic and paper bags is more than the cost of the bag.

    Our taxpayer dollars are being used to subsidize the cost of waste. Much of this money could be redirected to benefit our state. Similar laws have been passed worldwide and have proven to be successful. For example, when Washington D.C. instituted its recent five-cent fee, bag use declined from an average of 22.5 million per month to 3 million in the very first month, and fees generated about $150,000 for use by the city.

    This bill effectively addresses the issue of plastic pollution by positively changing consumer behavior, decreasing external costs, and decreasing the amount of waste Hawaii produces.

    I am a member of Plastic Free Hawaii (Kailua Chapter), a coalition of community members and businesses that strives to educate the stores, restaurants, residents, and visitors of Kailua on the environmental and health benefits of going plastic free. Find out more about us at http://plasticfreekailua.blogspot.com/

    Mahalo for the opportunity to testify on this matter.
    NAME, ADDESS, EMAIL, PHONE

    Learn more about the HI Legislative Process at the links above and at the Hawaii Public Access Room.

    Surfrider will also be hosting a free and fun screening of the new documentary "Bag It" at the Capitol with pupus and a panel discussion afterward on Wed., 2/16, at 5:30pm in the Auditorium. You can learn more and RSVP at Facebook.

    Saturday, January 22, 2011

    World Wetlands Day Kailua Event

    RAMSAR WORLD WETLANDS DAY
    Click here for flyer

    Sponsored by Ho`olaulima Ia Kawainui
    9 am - 1:30 pm
    SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 5, 2011

    at Windward YMCA & Faith Baptist Church (shared) Campus
    1200 - 1230 Kailua Road

    All are welcome to join us for World Wetlands Day 2011. There will be tours of the Ulupō Heiau, Kawainui and Hāmākua Marsh Complex, talks, exhibits, Hawaiian plant and food sales, entertainment, and learning activities for the whole family. Exhibits at Windward YMCA and Faith Baptist Church. Parking at Kailua Methodist Church off Kailua Rd. (Sponsored in part by
    Windward Ahupua`a Alliance and HI Department of Land & Natural Resources) Admission is free.

    We'll have a booth, so please stop by! We'll be partnering with our friends at Surfrider Foundation Hawaii.

    Let us know if you want to help out with the booth and activities.