Hawaii government, military leaders target joint sustainability issues
November 21, 2012
Agreement signed at Honolulu city hall pledges mutual effort and support
HONOLULU -- Col. Daniel Whitney, commander, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii, along with other installation leaders from military bases around Oahu, put pen to paper and signed a Memorandum of Understanding pledging closer collaboration between the City and County of Honolulu, here, Nov. 15.
Hawaii's Army, Marine, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard leaders signed the MOU on sustainability and solid waste management issues at Honolulu Hale, or city hall, here.
City and County of Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle hosted the MOU signing by military and city leadership at his office before about two dozen witnesses and media members.
The goal is to develop a comprehensive and integrated approach for solid waste management on Oahu that will assist the parties in their individual solid waste management programs and support mutual solid waste and sustainability objectives.
"This is a great example of multiple government branches coming together to improve efficiency and foster understanding that benefits everyone," Carlisle said. "The city and military have mutual interests in protecting the environment and helping create more sustainable practices for a better future."
The MOU pledges cooperation in many ways, including by coordinating efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle wastes; considering economic benefits of new technologies for resource recovery; coordinating waste management programs; and working to contribute to the Oahu economy and quality of life for its citizens.
"The Army and our military partners believe that shared knowledge will lead to actions that benefit the entire community," said Whitney.
The agreement establishes a working group that includes the City and County of Honolulu; Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam; USAG-HI; Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe Bay; and Coast Guard Base Honolulu.
"The key message here today is that we are all working together -- our installations, along with the City and County of Honolulu -- to make us less dependent on foreign fossil fuels," said Navy Capt. Jess James, commander, JBPHH.
"We recognize the need to do everything we can to conserve energy, convert waste to energy and promote energy security," James added.
While a comprehensive and integrated approach to solid waste management -- for the benefit of the entire community -- is the goal, the cooperative nature of the working partnership also charts an important course for the future, according to both military and civilian leaders.
"This agreement between Oahu's military installations and the City and County of Honolulu serves as a foundation for future collaborations," Whitney said.
"A lot of hard work has gone into this (MOU), and the signatures signify our commitment to work even harder to accomplish the mission," Carlisle added. "We all create waste, and we all have an obligation to ensure disposal of waste moves us towards a sustainable future."
(Editors note: The City and County of Honolulu and JBPHH Public Affairs each contributed to this article.)