East Hawaii News

Supreme Court to Hear Mauna Kea Lawsuit

August 27, 2015, 9:37 AM HST
* Updated August 27, 10:35 AM
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The Hawai’i Supreme Court will hear oral arguments today regarding the issuance of a conservation district land use permit for the Thirty Meter Telescope.

The hearing started at 8:45 a.m. Thursday at the Hawai’i Supreme Court courtroom, located the second floor of Aliiolani Hale at 417 South King Street in Honolulu.

The six petitioners in the case, Mauna Kea Anaina Hou, Clarence Kukauakahi Ching, Flores-Case Ohana, Deborah Ward, Paul Neves and KAHEA: The Hawaiian Environmental Alliance, argue that the State Land Board erred when approving a conservation district land use permit for the project.

Prior to heading to the Hawai’i Supreme Court, Third Circuit Court Judge Greg Nakamura ruled in favor of the project last year. An appeal was made to the Intermediate Court of Appeals before heading to the Hawai’i Supreme Court.

The TMT is a joint project between universities in California and Canada and research institutions in China, India and Japan. Construction for the $1.4 billion telescope on Mauna Kea was expected to start this year.

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A large protest aiming to protect Native Hawaiian cultural rights as since ensued and construction for the telescope has yet to begin.

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