Community invited to online meeting about dredging at Pohoiki boat ramp on Big Island
The Puna community is encouraged to attend and participate in a meeting this week about dredging the Pohoiki boat ramp on the Big Island to restore ocean access.
The Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation is hosting an online public meeting from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday via Zoom to discuss the draft environmental assessment for the project.
The meeting ID is 868 4295 3471 and the passcode is 755470. Click here to attend.
The use of the Pohoiki boat ramp facility, which is owned and maintained by the Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation, was landlocked by a new black sand beach thanks to a lava flow during the 2018 eruption of Kīlauea volcano. This negatively affected ocean rescue services, commercial fishing, food sustainability practices and tour and recreational opportunities.
The proposed project would restore ocean access at the 18-foot-wide boat ramp by removing accumulated material from Pohoiki Bay through excavation and dredging. It would require the removal of accumulated volcanic debris consisting of sand, rock and cobble deposited by the eruption that now covers an area of about 11.6 acres at cuts off the ramp’s ocean access.
According to the draft environmental assessment, that volcanic material that accumulated in the bay will be excavated, dredged and distributed on new lava land away from the ocean. The bay would be restored to a shape and depth that resembles pre-eruption conditions as much as possible and return the boat ramp facility to productive use.
The draft environmental assessment can be viewed here, with hard copies available at the state public libraries in Pāhoa, Mountain View and Hilo. Written comments on the draft assessment can be submitted via email at [email protected] or [email protected].
The deadline for written comments is May 23.