HONOLULU (KHON2) — The Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources is moving forward with their Holomua Marine 30 by 30 Initiative. The project aims to have 30 percent of each island be marine managed areas by 2030.

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In 2016, Hawaii launched an initiative to increase sustainability of our natural resources.

DLNR engaged with the community, starting to discuss the 30 by 30 project in Maui. “We’re coming to Maui to see what the issues and concerns of interest to the people are,” stated by the Recreational Fisheries Program Manager, Luna Kekoa.

One of the outcomes we’re hoping for is to form a navigation team, right, and this is going to be made up of community members, fishermen from this island who know the resources, who engage and can kind of be the guide for DAR as we create this network of marine managed areas,” said Kekoa.

DLNR says having marine managed areas increases size, variety and the number of fish in the managed area. The community will help with input on where they fish and why to determine where the marine managed sites will be. Kekoa is quick to remind that this will look different on each island.

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Kekoa said, “It’s a good turnout, I mean, this is what we wanted. We wanted to make sure to engage fishers… we have a lot of new faces that we haven’t seen here, a lot of good participation and that’s what we want. We want to make sure the voices of Maui are heard.”

Marine managed areas will protect coastal waters from the high-tide water mark out to 164 feet.