- One year ago, the groundbreaking celebration for the Thirty Meter Telescope was halted by opponents of the project. The moment has since come to be recognized as the start of current phase of active resistance to the construction of the observatory. Very little site work has been done over the past year.
- Today, TMT opponents are marking the date with activities at Puu Huluhulu and possibly the summit area.
- Over the weekend, a coalition of business organizations purchased a large newspaper advertisement, urging Governor David Ige in an open letter to “make it possible for the Thirty Meter Telescope to to begin its permitted construction under safe passage.”
MAUNA KEA, Hawaii – Today marks the anniversary of the ceremonial groundbreaking celebration for the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea. The day was so mired in confusion and interrupted by opposition to the project that the actual groundbreaking for the $1.4 billion observatory never happened. Instead, the moment marked what many consider the beginning of a protest that lasts to this day, a precursor to numerous arrests and a controversial blockade of the TMT that has made world wide headlines. The events have divided Hawaii between those in favor of the project and those against.
This famous moment (video above) on October 7, 2014 on the northern plateau of mountain’s 13 thousand-foot-high summit, also marked the emergence of Lanakila Mangauil as a new leader in the Hawaiian sovereignty movement. From our original coverage:
“When event guests eventually made it to the summit area, organizers hastily arranged to go forward with the ceremony, but were not able to get underway before an irate Lanakila Mangauil stormed the TMT site – in his bare feet – halting the ceremony. Mangauil was eventually joined by supporters and together they stopped the groundbreaking.” Big Island Video News on Oct. 7, 2014