Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kaua‘i receives funding for invasive species
More than $7 million in federal funds has been awarded to the State of Hawai‘i for restoration and recovery projects on military training installations located on O‘ahu, Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i Island.
Awarded by the U.S. Department of Defense, the $7,123,851 funding under the Environmental Integration Program will be dedicated to protecting and restoring rare species of plants and animals found only in the Aloha State. The support also will significantly bolster efforts to remove invasive species that threaten Hawai‘i’s quality of life, the economy, and native ecosystems, as well as wildfire prevention.
Pacific Missile Range Facility Barking Sands is set to receive funding for detection and management of high-impact aquatic and terrestrial invasive species.
The U.S. Army Garrison-Hawai‘i, Pōhakuloa Training Area, located between Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa in the Saddle Road region, will receive $1.3 million for its Nāpu‘u Natural Resource Protection: Mitigating Rare Plant Impacts project.
“We appreciate the REPI program’s support for numerous projects and initiatives underway and others that are planned. Hawai‘i has the sad distinction of having the highest number of endangered species on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) endangered species list,” said Department of Land and Natural Resources Chair Dawn Chang. “With large areas of State-managed lands adjacent to DoD facilities and installations we are excited to partner with REPI to get more of our rare plants and animals protected.”
The collaborative efforts will also provide some resiliency in the face of climate change, especially when it comes to rare and endangered plants and animals.
“The DoD is committed good stewardship of the environment and these projects, in partnership with the DLNR, are a demonstration of that commitment,” said Marine Corps Major General Mark Hashimoto, Mobilization Assistant to the Commander U.S. Indo-Pacific Command. “The military in Hawai‘i will always play a key role in the defense of our nation, the region, and the world, and as we perform this no-fail mission it is imperative we also protect the land and water for future generations.”
Other projects awarded REPI funding:
- O‘ahu: U.S. Army Garrison-Hawai‘i, Makua Military Reservation, Schofield Barracks, Kahuku Training Area, Poamoho Training Area – Ecosystem restoration and rare plant and animal preservation; $2.7 million
- Hawai‘i Island: U.S. Army Garrison-Hawai‘i, Pōhakuloa Training Area – Nāpu‘u Natural Resource Protection: Mitigating Rare Plant Impacts; $1.3 million
- Kaua‘i, O‘ahu, Hawai‘i Island: Pacific Missile Range Facility Barking Sands, Marine Corps Base Hawai‘i, Pōhakuloa Training Area – Detection and management of high-impact aquatic and terrestrial invasive species; $3.1 million
“State funds provided to the DLNR supplement the critical partner contribution needed to apply for these Federal funds. With the Legislature’s support of DLNR, we can multiply the federal grant investment,” Chang commented.