Myron Thompson was among several other Native Hawaiian panelists.
From our perspective, the most penetrating remarks were by Davianna Pomaikai McGregor, a professor and founding member of Ethnic Studies at the University of Hawaii. Professor McGregor is a practitioner of Native Hawaiian religion and culture and described why she and other supporters of the Pele Defense Fund continue to discourage if not resist altogether renewable energy development.
Everyone on the panel agreed that respect for Native Hawaiian values and members of that and the broader community is mandatory for renewable projects. However, Professor McGregor’s comments reveal a gulf between renewable developers and those who observe Native Hawaiian cultural and religious practices that is wide and appears to require innovative approaches to bridge.
We recorded most of the panel discussion and are posting much of Professor McGregor’s presentation here to give her position a wider audience than she enjoyed last evening. A portion of moderator Ramsay Taum’s closing comments are at the end of today’s post.
Professor Daviana Pomaikai McGregor:
Energy Forms as Deities
Moderator Ramsay Taum, Director of External Affairs and Community Partnerships at the School of Travel Industry Management (TIM) at UH, ended the evening with his own Native Hawaiian perspective by recalling his conversation with a cherished elder near the end of her life:
Henry Curtis of Life of the Land videotaped the entire event and will present an edited version on ‘Olelo Community Television sometime in July.