Stop the pollution from sugar cane ash and dust

I was on a whale-watching tour recently and a mother whale and her calf swam to our boat and hung alongside. Sugar cane ash started drifting toward us from a burn in Central Maui. We wanted to stay and enjoy the whales but the ash falling on us and breathing it was too much.

When the whales drifted a safe distance we were able to motor away, but I felt sorry for the whales as they had to stay there and breathe that ash in. The ash and the dust from the plowing in the fields end up polluting our reefs, the beaches where seabirds nest, and it pollutes the owls’ nests. The monk seals and dolphins have to breathe it also.

Maui cannot continue to pollute our land and our waters anymore. If they insist on planting sugar cane, then they cannot burn it. Plant something else that doesn’t need burning or plowing.

I understand the jobs issue, but the trade winds blow that dust and ash over a wide area. Take away the sugar cane and plant the native grasses that were growing there before man came along.

Richard Bond