(BIVN) – Governor David Ige gave the Hū Honua company a shout out in his Jan. 22 State of the State Address. Turns out, that was just the beginning of a busy month for the planned bioenergy facility in Pepe’ekeo.
In a recent newsletter, the company announced it will be dropping the Hū Honua name for a new monicker: Honua Ola, which means “living earth”. The company says the new name better represents the sustainability inherent in their method of producing power.
The bioenergy company is also welcoming a new president, and he’s a familiar face to Hawaii Island residents. Warren Lee, the former HELCO president and Director of the County’s Public Works Department, is coming aboard to lead Honua Ola.
“If you see Warren, please congratulate him on his new position,” the company stated in a recent newsletter. “We know how lucky we are to have a brilliant, experienced, community-minded servant leader in charge of Honua Ola. Welcome, Warren!”
Construction at the site of the power plant continues, and the company is also working on building its workforce, joining the WORK Hāmākua workforce development group.
Honua Ola also has a new community liaison in local resident Lorraine Mendoza.
Its not all smooth sailing for the bioenergy company, however. Recently, the Intermediate Court of Appeals ordered the Windward Planning Commission to revisit the shoreline impacts of the project with regard to an ocean outfall. The planning commission approved a special management area permit to Hū Honua in 2011, without requiring an environmental impact statement. A number of plaintiffs took the matter to court.
Today at the Windward Planning Commission meeting in Hilo, Hawaii: A recap of the Intermediate Court of Appeals order, remanding an aspect of the (formerly named) Hū Honua Bioenergy project to the commission with regard to its ocean outfall. pic.twitter.com/59HsSRwxWj
— BigIslandVideoNews (@bigislandnews) February 1, 2018