Anahola Renewable Energy Project Beneficiary Consultation Report
May 20, 2013
TO: Chairman and Members, Hawaiian Homes Commission
THROUGH: Darrell Yagodich, Planning Program Manager
FROM: Julie-Ann Cachola, Planner
SUBJECT: Beneficiary Consultation Report for the Anahola Renewable Energy Project (Biomass)
That the Hawaiian Homes Commission accepts this Beneficiary Consultation Report as the official public record of beneficiary issues and concerns relative to the Anahola Renewable Energy Project (Biomass).
The Anahola Renewable Energy Project, as originally proposed, provides direct benefits to DHHL through three (3) project components, which are summarized below:
1. General Lease Rent: DHHL’s General Lease to Green Energy Team, LLC (GET) for approximately 2,143 acres of mauka Anahola lands (all lands west of Kealia Road) will generate an estimated $55,000 per year in lease rent. The proposal would encumber 51% of the land at Anahola under one general lease (see Exhibit A). The term of the lease is still being negotiated. Green Energy would like a 30-year lease, however, the Department is investigating ways that lands could be taken out of the lease, incrementally, as the Department is ready and able to covert those lands into homestead awards.
2. The return of 267 acres of albizia-cleared land within the first 5 years at no cost to the Department, which the Department could award as agricultural homesteads.
3. In-Kind improvements to the lands under the General Lease include: clearing albizia trees/stumps, drainage improvements, and road improvements up to agricultural use standards.
Homestead Benefits Agreement: In addition to the negotiated benefits to the Department identified above, the Green Energy Team negotiated a separate homestead benefits agreement with HCDC and AHHA.
Beneficiary Consultation Process
The Department’s Beneficiary Consultation Policy, approved January 2009, recognize that meaningful, timely, and effective beneficiary consultation is essential to the successful implementation of Commission policies, programs, and projects.
The subject project by the Green Energy Team, LLC, fits under the category “preliminary development proposals” which is covered by the seven-step Beneficiary Consultation process. Approval of this submittal (Item G-2, Beneficiary Consultation Report for the Anahola Renewable Energy Project) by the Commission marks the completion of the final step in beneficiary consultation.
STEP 1. THE PROPOSED ACTION IS DESCRIBED:
Proposed 20-year general lease with an option to extend for approximately 2,143 acres of Anahola lands for the purpose of clearing existing Albizia trees from the lands, replanting and harvesting biomass feedstock, and delivering that feedstock to the biomass energy production facility located in Koloa, Kaua‘i.
STEP 2. BENEFICIARIES WERE NOTIFIED OF OPPORTUNITIES TO CONSULT:
(See Exhibit B)
1. Invitation Letter to attend the March 8, 2013 Beneficiary Consultation meeting. A total of 795 letters were mailed to all Anahola lessees, undivided interest lessees, and all applicants who reside in Anahola or in neighboring communities.
2. Public Notice inviting interested parties to attend March 14 and/or March 15 Public Hearings.
STEP 3. PRESENTATION MATERIALS FOR ALL MEETINGS ARE AVAILABLE FOR FEEDBACK:
(See Exhibit C)
1. Agenda and Information Packet distributed at the March 8, 2013 Beneficiary Consultation meeting.
2. March 14 and 15, 2013 Public Hearings:
- DHHL Presentation Materials
- DHHL Handout Materials
- Green Energy Team Presentation
STEP 4. COMMENTS ARE COMPILED INTO MEETING REPORTS:
(See Exhibit D)
1. March 8, 2013 Beneficiary Consultation Meeting Notes and List of Meeting Participants.
2. March 14, 2013 Public Hearing Notes and List of Public Hearing Participants
3. March 15, 2013 Public Hearing Notes and List of Public Hearing Participants
The Beneficiary Consultation Meeting and subsequent Public Hearings were extremely well-attended. The Table and additional data below attempt to capture the level of participation and engagement that was mobilized in the community between March 8 and March 15.
Table 1: Anahola Renewable Energy Project (Biomass), Public Meeting and Hearings
No. of Testimonies
March 8, 2013
March 14, 2013
King Kaumuali‘i School
March 15, 2013
Aston Aloha Beach Resort
|Signed Petition Against RP at CampFaith site||
|Signed Petition Against the Anahola Renewable Energy Project||
|Number of People who Attended 2 meetings||
|Number of People who Attended all 3 meetings||
- 37 written testimonies received
- 75 petition signatures against the Anahola Renewable Energy Project were submitted with a written testimony
- 696 petition signatures against the Anahola Renewable Energy Project were submitted along with other oral testimonies
The Department has met all of the requirements per the Beneficiary Consultation Policy.
Summary of Beneficiary Consultation Comments
The following section provides a summary of major issues, concerns, or themes derived from community consultation comments.
Sense of mistrust towards HCDC and AHHA
– Many comments revolved around the theme that HCDC and AHHA are organizations that do not represent the interests of the Anahola homesteaders or their community.
Fair Market Rent/Compensation
Why is DHHL getting only 2% of gross and not 100%?
– Question on whether the project compensation (lease rent, 2% of gross, and in-kind services) is commensurate with industry standards.
Process and Transparency
The process was not pono.
– Concern that the process was not transparent. It was a done deal with no early notice. We felt left out.
Existing Revocable Permits
What about the existing revocable permits?
– Concern about displacing existing month to month revocable permit ranchers
Length of Lease
Why is the length of the lease so long?
– Concern about committing land for 20-30 years to one entity
Agricultural Homestead Lots
What is the plan for the 267 acres for agricultural uses by native Hawaiians?
– Our goal is for beneficiaries to reside on the land and have the access to resources and capacity to grow crops, hunt, and fish.
– We need irrigation water to open up the land for farming.
– The educational component is critical for Hawaiian youth to learn skills and Anahola specific knowledge of its natural and cultural resources.
– We envision a community-based economic development or individual mercantile component.
– Concern that DHHL will not be able to develop the agricultural lots within the next five years.
Impacts on Land Unknown
What are the project specifics? Without this information, how can we assess its impacts – plus or minus?
– Concern about eucalyptus trees to be planted and how it will affect the land and water.
– How will they handle erosion and runoff of dirt and sediment to offshore Anahola? Impact on our fishing and limu beds?
– How much traffic? Trucks?
– Will they use pesticides?
– Will they take water for the eucalyptus trees?
How will the community benefit agreement be fairly distributed and managed?
– Concern about 2% of annual gross sales ($22,000-$39,000) being too small to fund the long list of benefits articulated in the agreement
– Concern about what portion would be spent on staff and administrative expenses vs. providing direct benefits to the community
– Beneficiaries recommend that Green Energy Technology LLC (GET) and the Department throw out the existing draft benefit agreement and start over in order to have greater participation/representation in developing a new homestead benefits agreement.
Staff respectfully requests that the Hawaiian Homes Commission accept the Beneficiary Consultation Report as the official public record of beneficiary issues and concerns relative to the Anahola Renewable Energy Project (Biomass). Staff responses and recommendations will be submitted to the Hawaiian Homes in June 2013.