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East // East Oahu News
Chris Fleck

Water Remedies For The Bay

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded a $59,000 grant fund to Malama Maunalua to help restore urban waters, support community revitalization and protect community health.

The speciality group’s main focus is protecting Maunalua Bay, which is being decimated by decades of urban development and rapid community growth.

“Protecting Maunalua Bay’s watershed allows city residents to enjoy the environmental and recreational benefits from their local waters and surrounding lands,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA regional administrator for the Pacific Southwest.

With plans to educate the community within popular recreational and shopping regions, Malama Maunalua is coordinating and organizing two demonstration sites that will depict water care and restoration models. The group is working with the city Department of Environmental Services, Urban Forestry Division and Department of Parks and Recreation to create a model at Koko Head District Park. Another demonstration model is being planned for Koko Marina Center.

The design for the park features an estimated 20-by-20-foot model of different native grasses, rocks and sediments which will show different ways of controlling erosion.

“It’s essentially a rain garden,” said executive director and project manager Rae Decoito, “but the idea is this is phase one of many demonstrations we will have for the community.”

Decoito also is coordinating a similar project with Sofos Realty Corp. at Koko Marina and is awaiting low-impact design models. Approval and execution of the designs is being planned for this month.

“Basically, this is for all our community,” she said, “so they can walk by and see different ways and techniques they can install in their yards. Also for everyone to be mindful of the flow of water and how to use it.”

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