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Challenge the Maui BioPesticide Mosquito Experiment

Hawaii Unites is Raising Funds to Challenge the Maui BioPesticide Mosquito Experiment in Environmental Court

Demand an Environmental Impact Statement!

The Department of Land and Natural Resources, proposing/determining agency for the biopesticide mosquito experiment on Maui, published their Final Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) in the 4/8/23 issue of The Environmental Notice. This set the 30-day deadline for challenging the project in Environmental Court. We have until Monday, May 8th, 2023, to file our case and seek a ruling to require an Environmental Impact Statement.Hawaii Unites has retained an attorney, and we’re on schedule to meet the May 8th filing deadline. We need your help to raise the funds to move forward. We’re anticipating at least $30,000 will be needed for this phase of the legal challenge. Our immediate goal is to raise $5,000 to get the case to court once we’ve filed. If we can raise these funds, we may have a chance to halt this project.

We believe that the FONSI never should have been issued by the Board of Land and Natural Resources (BLNR). Clear, documented information was provided to the BLNR of the serious risks and potential significant impacts of the project. They chose not only to disregard that information, but to suppress it from the public.

Testimony from Hawaii Unites was submitted prior to the BLNR’s approval of the EA and issuance of the FONSI. Scientific studies, expert opinions, and the multi-agency partnership’s own documents were referenced regarding numerous risks to our environment, native birds, wildlife, and public health.

This project is an experiment on our island home. The southern house mosquito has never been used for stand-alone Incompatible Insect Technique (IIT) field release. Landscape level control of the southern house mosquito using IIT has never been done before. The 64,666-acre East Maui project area is over 89 times the size of the largest IIT biopesticide mosquito release area globally to date.

The population suppression method proposed here on Maui requires the release of up to 775,992,000 mosquitoes per WEEK (potentially over 40 BILLION per year). This would need to continue for at least 20 years, according to the EA. Wolbachia IIT mosquitoes have never been used for conservation purposes, and the outcome is admittedly unknown.

The accidental release of lab-bred females who bite and breed has not been adequately addressed. This project could even create lab-strain-infected females in the wild, as the introduced bacteria can transmit horizontally to wild mosquitoes and other insect vectors of disease. Wolbachia has the potential to cause increased pathogen infection and could make mosquitoes more capable of spreading diseases like avian malaria and West Nile virus. Peer-reviewed studies document these risks. This plan has the very real potential of causing the extinction of endangered native birds, and it may impact human health.

Hawaii Unites is speaking up for the ‘āina and demanding an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Please help us raise the funds to challenge this mosquito experiment in court. Your tax-deductible donations move this case forward:

GiveSendGo: Hawaii Unites to Challenge Maui Mosquito Release

Mahalo for your continued support and for sharing this message with the community.

Tina Lia
Founder & President
Hawaii Unites

Please continue to share our petition to raise public awareness and make our voices heard: Demand an Environmental Impact Statement for the Experimental Mosquito Release on Maui