Environment

J.B. Friday, University of Hawai'i
J.B. Friday, University of Hawai'i

When we think of life in the city, the forest is probably the last thing on our minds, and yet in many cities around the world the nurturing of the urban forest is a priority. Green spaces and the urban tree canopy are considered integral to the sustainability and quality of life in large cities such as Honolulu.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Moanalua Gardens Foundation
Moanalua Gardens Foundation

The Moanalua Gardens is devoted to preserving the native culture and environment of Hawaiʻi through education and cultural practice. They offer a range of educational programs, from school field trips, to weekend walks, and even cultural festivals. One of their most celebrated offerings is the annual Prince Lot Hula Festival.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Paul Jokiel
Paul Jokiel

It is often said that the coral reefs of Hawaiʻi are the tropical rainforests of the ocean. Just as the land forests of the Hawaiian islands are home to an incredibly diverse selection of ecosystems, so too are the coral reefs.

Christopher Phillips explains...

DLNR
DLNR

Hunting is a valued traditional past time in Hawaiʻi. For many socially-conscious hunters it is a means to gather quality meat from a trusted and often sustainable source. For hunting to serve such wide ranging interests it is imperative that prospective hunters receive appropriate education, and this is where the hunter education program comes in.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Lei Day

Feb 3, 2016
J.B. Friday, University of Hawaiʻi
J.B. Friday, University of Hawaiʻi

The first of May, May Day, as it is known in the northern hemisphere, is a celebration of spring, the beginning of the seasonal bloom which will lead to a bountiful harvest later on in the year. Here in Hawaiʻi, we know this day also as Lei Day – a celebration of culture and tradition.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Bioblitz

Feb 3, 2016
National Park Service / Jay Robinson
National Park Service / Jay Robinson

Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park is host to a remarkable confluence of science and culture, the annual Bioblitz event. This unique two-day event brings together scientists, cultural practitioners, and the public.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Bishop Museum
Bishop Museum

One of the most iconic links between culture and the forest is in the form of the kapa cloth. This fabric is constructed using the fibers of trees and plants.

Christopher Phillips explains...

US Fish & Wildlife Service
US Fish & Wildlife Service

The Schoolyard Habitat program helps teachers and students create wildlife habitats at their own schools. These habitats provide a naturalized habitat area, a crucial sanctuary for local species.

Christopher Phillips explains...

State Parks

Feb 3, 2016
DLNR Division of State Parks
DLNR Division of State Parks

Hawaiʻi's state parks are home to some of its most iconic and celebrated landscapes, cultural treasures, and recreational opportunities. There are 50 parks across the state, covering a total area of around 30,000 acres. These parks can be found everywhere, from the urban sprawl of Honolulu, to the remote and rugged wild lands of Hawaiʻi Island.

Christopher Phillips explains...

National Climate Assessment
National Climate Assessment

Climate change is an issue that resonates deeply within our communities in Hawaiʻi. Our economy, culture and health all depend on the health of ecosystems across the state. From the highest mountain peaks, to the coral reefs and near shore environments, we depend on these ecosystems for the survival of our society.

Christopher Phillips explains...

The University of Hawaiʻi Honey Bee Project
The University of Hawaiʻi Honey Bee Project

When the products of the forest are on the dinner plate, there is arguably no greater appreciation of them. One of the sweetest products to grace our tables is uniquely Hawaiian. Hawaiian honey can be found across the islands.

Christopher Phillips explains...

The Hawaiian Vanilla Company
The Hawaiian Vanilla Company

One of the only commercial vanilla farms in the United States, exists on the lush wild slopes of Hawaiʻi Island. Hawaiian vanilla is said to be the second most expensive spice in the world. This exotic ingredient can be found in dishes the world over.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Office of Mauna Kea Management (OMKM)
Office of Mauna Kea Management (OMKM)

A large portion of the land mass of Hawaiʻi Island, is contained on the slopes of the tallest mountain in the world, Mauna Kea. The mountain is host to a variety of ecosystems, stretching from the coastal waters, to the arid aeolian desert of the summit area.

Christopher Phillips explains...

The Nature Conservancy
The Nature Conservancy

One of the most notorious and well documented threats to Hawaiʻi's forests ecosystem, comes in the form of sheep, pigs, and goats – the ungulates. The ungulates are responsible for much of the ecological devastation that has befallen the forest understory. Many precious plants species have been brought to the brink of extinction by the insatiable appetites of the ungulates.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Wikipedia
Wikipedia

Nestled atop of the lush Mānoa Valley watershed, there is the Lyon Arboretum. It is located a mere five miles from the bustling crowds and noise of Waikīkī. The Arboretum itself serves as a scientific and cultural resource for Oʻahu's mostly urban population.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Restoration Agroforestry, Dr. Travis Idol
Restoration Agroforestry, Dr. Travis Idol

The task of restoring Hawaiʻi's forests is nothing short of monumental. To truly make a difference in protecting precious island ecosystem it requires substantial financial investment, expenditure in manhours and a logistical train of plant materials, and support for volunteers, students, and professional scientists.

Christopher Phillips explains...

The Nature Conservancy
The Nature Conservancy

Water, or wai in the Hawaiian language, is the heart of life in Hawaiian Islands. It maintains the many precious ecosystems across the state, it drives the agricultural economy, provides fresh drinking water, and unlimited health benefits. It's no wonder then that water lies at the heart of Hawaiian culture as the most treasured natural resource and a central cultural pillar.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Hal Lum
Hal Lum

Across the state of Hawaiʻi there are hundreds of skilled, pasionate artisans. Workshops and galleries showcase the very best of local creativity, and talent can be found in every corner of the state of Hawaiʻi.

Christopher Phillips explains...

The Hawai'i Conservation Alliance
The Hawai'i Conservation Alliance

The Hawaiʻi Conservation Alliance is composed of twenty organizations, including governmental, cultural, educational, and nonprofit. Their mission is to safeguard the biodiversity of Hawaiʻi's ecosystems.

Christopher Phillips explains...

HFIA
HFIA

Carbon reduction is a frequently mentioned topic in today's society. Society faces the specter of climate change and the consequences brought about by years of the unrestrained burning of fossil fuels. But what can we do here in Hawaiʻi to combat climate change?

Christopher Phillips explains...

Pacific Island Fisheries Group
Pacific Island Fisheries Group

The vast Pacific ocean, appears to stretch endlessly to the horizon when viewed from the shores of Hawaiʻi. The ocean depths are hidden from view, but the products of the ocean find their way to our dinner tables every day.

Christopher Phillips explains...

www.fireantfreemaui.org
www.fireantfreemaui.org

The little fire ant, or LFA as it is informally known, is an unwelcome visitor to the Hawaiian islands. It's small size and light orange color belie its devastating potential. This tiny invader is native to Central and South America, and was thought to have been introduced accidentally to Hawaiʻi.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Eco-tourism

Feb 2, 2016
Hawaii Forest & Trail
Hawaii Forest & Trail

Eco-tourism is one of Hawaiʻi's major draws to visitors. The sheer variation in natural environments that the islands have to offer, attracts the usual crowd of campers and hikers and beachgoers to famous spots all over the islands. But those seeking a more enlightening experience will head for one of the many eco-tourism opportunities that can be found in Hawaiʻi.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Bio-energy

Feb 2, 2016
Wn.com
Wn.com

Energy independence has been a contentious issue in Hawaiʻi for some time. The state relies on imported fossil fuels to meet its rising energy demands. These fossil fuels produce greenhouse gases when burned, fueling the global climate change.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Erin Miller, West Hawaii Today
Erin Miller, West Hawaii Today

A defining feature of the Hamākua coast of Hawaiʻi Island is the vast plantations of eucalyptus trees that stretch back from highway 11. The Eucalyptus tree was introduced to Hawaiʻi around 150 years ago. It was chosen for its attractive traits, including fast growth, which makes it an attract wood product and a potential economic generator.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Anthony Savvis
Anthony Savvis

Along the North Kona Coast of Hawaiʻi Island, there are a cluster of endangered plant preserves. Around 70 of them are located at the villages of LaʻiʻŌpua in Kealakehe. These precious sites of restoration are managed by the Hawaiʻi Forest Institute, the Hawaiʻi Forest Industry Association, and The Department of Hawaiian Homelands.

Christopher Phillips explains...

Toby Hoogs
Toby Hoogs

The future holds little certainty. Our planet and the wondrous multitude of lifeforms that inhabit its surface face a critical juncture. As the dominant life form on planet Earth, the choices we make in this century will define us for generations to come.

Christopher Phillips explains...

University of Hawaii
University of Hawaii

Scientists say a disease killing hundreds of thousands of ‘ōhi‘a trees on Hawaii's Big Island is spreading. Recent aerial surveys show the acreage of infected trees has more than doubled in the past two years. State, county and federal agencies collaborated to conduct the surveys by helicopter last month. The fungal disease, called Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death, was found in 34,000 acres of ‘ōhi‘a forest. Rob Hauff is the Forest Health Coordinator with the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

NOAA: No Need To Panic, The Whales Are Still Coming

Jan 6, 2016
Flickr / Bellevue Fine Art Repro
Flickr / Bellevue Fine Art Repro

It seems humpback whales aren’t in any rush to get to the islands. Each winter, more than 10,000 migrate from Alaska to Hawaii’s warmer waters to mate, birth and care for their young. But as HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, the whales are behind schedule.

A couple weeks ago, Ed Lyman got a call about a separated whale calf off Lahaina, Maui. He’s a response coordinator for the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. “We responded, motoring to an offshore of Lahaina,” recalled Lyman. “We saw not a single whale the whole run, and then nothing on the way back.”

Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources
Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources

Hundreds of thousands of native ohia trees are dying off because of a new fungus. The disease is spreading across the Big Island and state officials are hoping to contain it before it reaches other islands. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports.

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