Thursday, November 15, 2018


Hawai`i Tribune-Herald - November 10, 2018

The state Supreme Court agreed to give Thirty Meter Telescope opponents more time to consider asking for reconsideration of its recent ruling.

The opponents, a mix of Native Hawaiian cultural practitioners and environmentalists, asked for an extension because the dissenting opinion wasn’t published along with the majority ruling and a concurring opinion. The dissenting opinion also was published Friday.

Opponents will have 10 days from Friday to make a request for reconsideration....

...In his dissenting opinion, Associate Justice Michael Wilson said BLNR erred by approving the project before impacts on the mountain are reduced below the “tipping point.” He said conditions to remove other observatories are “little more than aspirational goals.”

“In other words, BLNR concludes that the degradation to the summit area has been so substantially adverse that the addition of TMT would have no substantial adverse effect,” Wilson wrote. “Thus, while conceding that Mauna Kea receives constitutional and statutory protection commensurate with its unchallenged position as the citadel of Hawaiian cultural pantheon, the BLNR applies what can be described as a degradation principle to cast off cultural or environmental protection by establishing that prior degradation of the resource — to a level of damage causing a substantial adverse impact — extinguishes the legal protection afforded to natural resources in the conservation district.”

TMT International Observatory has not yet announced when construction would resume on the mountain....