HILO, Hawaii – Cindy Freitas, a participant in the contested case hearing for the Thirty Meter Telescope planned for Mauna Kea, presented her testimony on Tuesday.
Freitas is opposed to the $1.5 billion observatory project, and spoke of her experiences during the 2015 occupation of the mountain.
I am a Native Hawaiian, descended of the native inhabitants of Hawai’i prior to 1778 and born and raised in Hawai’i my entire life.
I learned my cultural traditional customary religion practices though my families Lineage.
My grandmother and grandfather is the strongest mentor for me in my growing up and raised me in a traditional cultural way. We would go to the mountain and do prayers (“Pule”) for many different things. Also I have witness things beyond my understanding till I got older and mostly my grandparents also made sure that we do not desecrate any thing on land. ocean or any were else to be respectful of your surroundings.
My grandparent would speak the manaleo style (Old Hawaiian language) which tried to teach the next generation but because of the influence of time we only learn a little of the language. She would take us to the mountain and learn to plant our food. raise our livestock and take care of the land so that the land would take care of the people in their culture practices.
We were thought in the Ahupua’a style (from the ocean to the mountain). While we work mostly in the middle of the Ahupua’a we would also go to the ocean and fish as well. My grandparents would always tell us to pule first before we fish and also give a ho’okupu (is a gift of abundance of mountain food that we bring) and leave it on a rock at the ocean shore line and ask for permission to fish and be safe. Then our catch would be a bounce so that we share with the people that live close to us. We also leave a fish on a rock when we get to the mountain for ho’okupu as well.
As I grew I never forgot my upbringing. Now with a family of my own I teach them also the cultural customary traditional religion practices as well and we as parents learn though our children.
I have enrolled my 2 girls as Kula Kaiapuni O Kona in the early 2000 and we grew with the school with all kinds of chants. pule and protocols. Today the school is name Ehunuikaimalino and located at Konawaena location. Though this school I have learn also so much cultural customary religion practices as well.
As for Mauna Kea and everywhere else in the world I have deep respect for the natural resources and the native plants and things that live within the earth. Today
because of the fast development we as people need to keep our natural resources and help to save what is there.
I have visit Mauna Kea for years in the past as well as other places on the island for culture customary religion practices and continue to visit places on this island.
Around or about January 2015 till the present I have been visiting Mauna Kea more often to do culture customary religion practices as well as protecting the scared Mauna.
It has been very emotionally for me to see what was happening up on Mauna Kea. I have been witnessing a lot of mankind desecration and an overwhelming flow of visitors that come to Mauna Kea. It saddens me to see that mankind has not taking care of the significant places on the island and especially Mauna Kea.
The machines that was park on the submit of Mauna Kea has been leaking oil (Exhibits S-l4c;S-l4d;S-14e;S-l4f;S-14g;S-]0;S-1 1;S-12;S-3oa) also the holes in the ground that has cement (Exhibits S-7;S-8)on it has never been put back to its natural state. Also a complaint was filed via email to DLNR about the spill with no respond (Exhibit S-l4b; S-1 5). It was reported to the news at Khon2. (Exhibit S-16).This has cause a substantial adverse impact to existing natural resources within the surrounding area and will be detrimental to the public health. safety. and welfare. (Exhibit 8-30)
The Caltech Submillimeter Observatory (“C SO”) has also leak 22.7 gallons of hydraulic fluid in 2009 and pass hydraulic leaks. (Exhibit B.o3al;S-3;S-3oa;). It has cause substantial adverse impact to existing resources within the surrounding area and is a detrimental to the public health, safety. and welfare.(Exhibit S-30)
Professor of Zoology, Mr. William Alanson Bryan who has been appointed by the Board of Regents who discovered the traces of ancient glacial on the northeast and northern sides of the Mauna Kea Submit (Exhibit S-28;S-28a;S-6) Building the TMT on the northern side will cause a substantial adverse impact to the existing natural resources within the surrounding area and will be detrimental to the public health, safety, and welfare.
As the story was told by Kupuna that on the 13,000 feet level there is a burying ground. where ancient chiefs were laid to rest. (Exhibit S-28d;S-28e) All the Telescope on the Mauna kea has cause great pain to me to know that the chiefs are laid to rest and adding another telescope will be cumulative to the submit.(Exhibit S-3oa;S-30)
I also did the Site Visit on September 26, 2016 with some of the petitioners as well as Hearing Officer. DOCARE officers. OMKM officers and council and others. The transportation was provided by Arnott’s Hiking Adventures in a 15 passenger van and the driver to our van was Ikaika. (Exhibit S-29;S-29a;S-29b;S-30)
The Site visit was so fast all I saw was the beauty of the land and some of the helium balloon.
The Manitowoc 2250 Crane with 300 ton lifting capacity in combination with a 200 ton hydraulic assist crane which will have a substantial adverse impact to existing natural resources with in the surrounding area and will cause a detrimental to the public health, safety, and welfare.(Exhibit S-27 page 18; S-30;S-3oa)
There spring water under Mauna Kea which it records in the Basic Water Resources (Exhibit S-18b) Building the TMT on Mauna Kea will destroy the aquifer and cause a substantial adverse impact to the existing waters that flows down the mountain.
The Access Road will have to be modified to move the crane and the telescope which weight tons to get to the submit. The access road will have a 30,000 cubic yards of material remove only 3.000 will be fill back into the access road.( Exhibit S-31b:S-31c;S- 30:8-3oa)) Road designs should minimize slope cutting.
The Design of the TMT does not meet the 2000 Master Plan. Section X] of the 2000 Master Plan provides design guidelines to direct development for both renovations of existing facilities and new construction and it addressed the facility siting, scale. height and width. color. surface texture and material. roofs. fences. roadways and parking. (Exhibit S-3 1) However Comprehensive Management Plan (“CMP”) states as the CMP maintains consistency with the 2000 Master Plan. future updates to that plan should be consistent with the CMP.(Exhibit S-31a) All design guidelines in every document that is written in this preceding does not meet the 2000 Master Plan. (Exhibit S-31a) There for it does not meet the eight Criteria. (Exhibit 8-30)
I have watch a fast pace of development and it is getting to the point that the developers and foreign investors are not of our island who don’t understand the cultural part of our heritage and will pay big monies to destroy our natural resources and our culture customary religion practices in our own home lands which it is scared to the people of the land.
As a native Hawaiian I will stand strong for the land and our people and to teach the next generation to hold on to their cultural part of there heritage as well as the natural resources of the land.