I think that the best solution is to keep H-Power and to maybe expand the company. H-Power’s main purpose is to reduce the amount of municipal waste on Oahu, so it wouldn’t have to go to the landfill. Two main issues that landfills cause environmentally is air pollution and ground water pollution. H-Power processes most of the residential and commercials waste in their facility, and the facility produces electricity for up to 10% of Oahu’s homes. It is a waste-to-energy plant. They should also keep the recycling companies here because when you purchase bottles or cans of drinks you’re charged.
I learned that the primary function of the Honolulu Program of Waste Energy Recovery (H-POWER) is to reduce the volume of municipal waste on Oahu. He stated that majority of all waste the facility both residential and commercial that is later burned, then steamed and later produces about 10% of Oahu’s electricity. I think it was about 40,000 homes that could be provided with electricity. Some things that cannot be processed at H-Power will end up going to the landfill they have here on Oahu. But since it opened up, most of the waste is processed there.
Some of the things I’ve learned so far is mainly about the reading material and how the overconsumption that we all do has an impact on the environment, the community and our health. In the book, Annie Leonard gives solutions to the problem but I personally think that it is nearly impossible for us to fully commit to making changes in our lifestyles and habits because we are just so used to buying these products, tossing it when we don’t care for them, not checking labels to see what kind of chemicals they carry that can jeopardize or health, and recycling. We consider ourselves to busy to do any of those things. We feels that we need all these materials to make us happy, which ultimately it does. Companies don’t care about who and how products affect people and the environment. All they care about is the money to be made. Another thing I’ve learned so gar is how to structure essays. Which really, I had no idea how to do. I mean, I had an idea but never really knew there were actual steps to composing it. The freewrites we do is a very great way to let your mind go and write freely about whatever you feel on a specific topic. One of the most fearful thing for me was and still is the presentations and debates. I’ve always had a fear of public speaking but I’ve learned that it’s a great way to teach classmates about research you’ve done about a specific topic and everyone giving you feedback on how you did and how some things could help make it better. I learned that you can never learn to much and there’s always room for more knowledge. For example, expanding your vocabulary. How we all choose words from our reading that we do not know study and learn them and try to use them in our everyday communications.
I think I would consider Waianae some form of environmental racism. The community of Waianae is of Hawaiians mainly and lower income housing. Waianae has a dump site that is extremely close to the public. The smell is incredibly strong and foul. It’s pretty disgusting. The toxic fumes of the garbage disposal just lingers in the air, and I’m sure it causes people to become sick or nauseated or dizzy just by breathing it in.
I think that production companies are to blame for the problem of toxins in our products. Production companies continue to use chemicals that make products last longer, look better, and taste better, but companies know that these chemicals cause health issues to people. Companies are just taking the cheaper route to making these products, so consumers will continue to buy them. Some solutions are that people should stop buying products from these companies and let them know you will not purchase items that contain harmful chemicals that affect your health. Companies can use healthier alternatives in packaging.
Something that I found very disturbing is that companies continue to use toxic chemicals in creating the stuff that we use or consume. Those companies are well aware of the effects it has on people, short term and long term, such as cancer, breathing problems, etc… but they continue to make it. Companies seem to care more about the money to be made on these products then the people that they are hurting. I don’t understand how they aren’t able to find other healthy alternatives to packaging in these products to reduce the health risks that these products could potentially expose to humans.
I think that we should be entitled to water rights. Why should we have to pay for natural resources that is very essential to the human life? It is very important that we, the people, learn and be well educated on how to conserve and save unused water versus throwing it down the drain as well though. We should be given water rights freely because we do indeed need it in order to survive, as well as need it for other important uses such as hygiene and to grow produce that we can use to provide meals for our family. Water should be a right as long as we know how to use it wisely.
I don’t think the water of Waiahole should be diverted to Ewa because it affects the natural habitat of the stream and environment. By diverting the streams, it introduces trees and grasses that replaces the native flora and disrupts the watershed. It also introduces cattle that will harm the stream banks that’ll cause erosion and diminish the water quality because the cattle will trample over the streams. It takes away gallons of water supply that is essential to the produce such as taro. It will also affect the natural flow of the stream and cause fish to get sick and die which could be used as food for the people.