Marine sanctuary EIS part of review plan

The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary has published a notice of intent to publish an environmental impact statement as part of its legally mandated periodic review of its management plan.

The review began in 2010 with a series of public meetings, and a draft revised management plan will be released for public review in the spring of 2014, according to an announcement from sanctuary officials.

The sanctuary is jointly managed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the state Department of Land and Natural Resources.

“The review of the sanctuary’s management plan is an opportunity for the state of Hawaii and NOAA to continue work together to ensure that Hawaii’s resources can be utilized responsibly and continue to be enjoyed for generations to come,” said William J. Aila, Jr., DLNR chairman.

The draft EIS will include a substantive analysis of any effects the sanctuary’s revised management plan may have on the economic welfare, social welfare, and cultural practices of communities or the state.

The notice is in the current issue of the state Office of Environmental Quality Control’s “Environmental Notice.” It can be found online at

There is a 30-day public comment period that ends Feb. 7.

All comments already collected by NOAA in 2010 remain under full consideration by both the state and NOAA and do not need to be resubmitted.

Comments may be submitted via email at, by fax to (808) 587-0115, or by regular mail to the Department of Land and Natural Resources, Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, 1151 Punchbowl St., Room 330; Honolulu 96813.

More information is available on the sanctuary’s website at