East Hawaii News

TMT Construction Resumption Date Uncertain

September 10, 2015, 12:50 PM HST
* Updated September 10, 12:52 PM
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The Thirty Meter Telescope has held off formal construction at the TMT site since June 24, when crews were stopped by a blockage of self-proclaimed Mauna Kea ‘Protectors,’ and TMT’s Associate Director, Dr. Michael Bolte, says there is currently no resumption date planned.

Dr. Bolte noted in a statement to Big Island Now Thursday that the project is committed to working towards the union of science and culture to bring the “best possible stewardship of the mountain, provide local educational opportunities, and enable this global scientific endeavor.”

In the statement, Dr. Bolte notes that the project “may take some additional time.”

“We still do not have a date for the restart of construction on Maunakea, but work continues at each of our partner institutions in California, Canada, China, Japan, and India.”

Early Wednesday morning, the second wave of arrests since the implementation of the 120-day emergency management rules took place on Mauna Kea.

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Seven women and one man were arrested, including Bronson Kobayashi, Sandy Kamaka, Hawane Rios, Jennifer Leina’ala Sleightholm, Shanell Subica, Kuuipo Freitas, Patricias Ikeda, and Ruth Aloua.

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One of the arrestees, 26-year-old Freitas, told Big Island Now Wednesday that the arrests came as a surprise with no prior citation or request to leave.

The DLNR says the eight arrested were breaking emergency rules that were approved by members of the BLNR on July 11 and subsequently signed by Governor David Ige on July 14. The rules include remaining out of the restricted area between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m., along with not allowing various “camping equipment.”

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