HILO, Hawaii – Robert Petricci of the geothermal-watchdog Puna Pono Alliance group testified before the Windward Planning Commission on November 3, saying they’ve “got a lot of concerns” about the mayor’s request for additional funding to supplement a geothermal public health study. The health study is one of the recommendations to emerge from the Adler geothermal study group that convened in 2012.
The item – printed below – was withdrawn from the commission’s agenda, however rules allowed Petricci to share his view during public testimony.
Discussion and action on a claim for the release of funds from the Geothermal Asset Fund that includes a recommendation from the claims adjuster, for the following community approved geothermal impact mitigation project:
Additional Funding to Supplement Geothermal Public Health Study -$225,000
Discussion and action on a request for additional funding to supplement the funding previously approved by the Windward Planning Commission to conduct a public health study of up to three years to determine ifthere are health effects on Puna residents that can be linked to geothermal energy development that will focus on effects on central nervous system, respiratory and anxiety disorder symptom functions. The Windward Planning Commission, at its September 4, 2014 meeting, awarded an amount of$ 750,000 from the Geothermal Asset Fund for this study subject to the Mayor’ s Office seeking additional input from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with annual reports to the Windward Planning Commission on the status of the Request for Proposal ( RFP). This current claim seeks additional funding beyond the awarded $750,000 to conduct this study based on responses to the RFP.