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Public hearing Wednesday on Auwahi conservation plan

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources will hold a public hearing on Wednesday, August 31 on a draft habitat conservation plan for the proposed Auwahi windfarm.

The hearing will begin at 7 p.m. at the Mayor Hannibal Tavares Community Center, multipurpose room in Pukalani.

The habitat conservation plan outlines measures to avoid, minimize, mitigate, and monitor possible incidental take of threatened and endangered species from construction and operation of the wind farm.

Construction and operation of the wind farm has the potential to result in incidental take the ‘ua‘u or Hawaiian petrel, nēnē or Hawaiian goose, ōpe‘ape‘a or Hawaiian hoary bat, and Blackburn’s sphinx moth.

In addition, the Habitat Conservation Plan outlines measures to ensure a net recovery benefit to the species that are the focus of the plan.

Auwahi Wind Energy LLC proposes to construct and operate the 21 megawatt wind farm and battery energy storage system (BESS) on land along the slopes of Haleakala in Ulupalakua.

The proposed project would include an electrical collection system, an operations and maintenance facility, an approximately nine-mile, 34.5-kilovolt generator-tie line, an interconnection substation, and an approximately 27-mile construction access route from the Port of Kahului to the project site.

Public comments are being accepted through September 23, 2011 by contacting the Division of Forestry and Wildlife.

Comments can be sent to: Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife, 1151 Punchbowl Street Room 325, Honolulu, HI, 96813. Attention: HCP Coordinator Sandee Hufana. Comments can also be emailed to: Sandee.K.Hufana@hawaii.gov.

*** Supporting information courtesy state Department of Land and Natural Resources.