Doesn’t seem like there will be an undersea energy cable between Lanai and Molokai anytime soon.

According to this story in The Molokai Dispatch, state and federal energy officials recently got “a clear message” from Molokai residents who voiced continued opposition to the potential interisland transmission cable.

“I’m totally pro-renewable energy which is why I’m very concerned and upset by this document,” said Molokai resident and energy expert Mike Bond, referring to the Hawaii Clean Energy Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS). “The one thing that concerns me the most is the tacit acceptance of the undersea cable… I think the cable is a disaster — it’s hyper-costly, and in my view, a political, corporate scam.”

The PEIS is 1,000-page-plus document that analyzes potential environmental impacts associated” with a wide variety of clean energy technologies and activities across the state,” says the Dispatch. 

Molokai Big Wind site

A proposed site for Big Wind on Molokai, which was never to be.

Sophie Cocke/Civil Beat

Government officials appear to be listening to resident concerns.

“We’ve long said if there’s significant community opposition to any particular project, we don’t want to see it happen,” said Mark Glick, Hawaii’s state energy administrator, in an interview after the meeting. “I think our record speaks for itself — we’re the ones that reversed this process — we’re a big part of the reason why this has shifted [away from Big Wind.]”

The Dispatch says that Molokai residents “remained mostly focused on one thing: opposition to the potential of an undersea cable.”

“I think Molokai has stated loud and clear our stance on the cable and we oppose it,” said Kanohowailuku Helm, president of energy group I Aloha Molokai.

Glick said despite the potential for a Maui to Oahu cable, “it is certainly not a consideration for Molokai.”

To get a feel for energy issues on the Friendly Isle, read these related Civil Beat articles:

Everything You Need to Know About Energy for the Coming Week

Big Turnout For Molokai Energy Meeting But No One Likes Big Wind

Molokai Big Wind Deal Falls Apart

Up In The Air: Will Molokai’s Resistance Save It From Big Wind?

Molokai Clean Energy Initiative Unveiled

About the Author