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Lahaina residents and businesses invited to join storm drain stenciling event

By Staff | Jul 12, 2018

Volunteers participated in a storm drain stenciling event in Napili in April. PHOTO BY LIZ FOOTE.

LAHAINA – After two successful storm drain stenciling events in West Maui that resulted in over 100 drains being marked, the West Maui Kumuwai campaign and partners are hosting the next event in Lahaina on Saturday, July 14, aiming to stencil the drains along the north and south end of Front Street (excluding the Historic District) and in the surrounding neighborhoods.

Storm drain stenciling has proven to be a fun event for all ages over 12 years old, and it’s a great way to raise awareness about the connections between land and ocean.

Participants should meet at 9 a.m. in the parking lot of Lahaina United Methodist Church at the north end of Front Street at the corner of Baker Street.

Training in the method and all materials required for this simple and fun activity will be provided by organizers.

Over 30 people participated in the last storm drain stenciling event in April in Napili, making a visible impact in the community.

According to participant Caroline Cooper, as her team marked the drains in a Napili neighborhood, they received awesome feedback from the local residents.

She noted the event was “so great and a very fun way to work with a team to positively affect the community and environment!”

The County of Maui’s storm drain stencils feature an image of Hawaii’s State Fish, the humuhumunukunukuapua’a (reef triggerfish), in addition to the “no dumping” message.

Storm drain stenciling is a great way to raise awareness that Maui’s storm drains empty directly to the ocean, bringing with them all the pollutants that accumulate on land and run-off during storm events or as a result of irrigation practices.

These pollutants range from oil leaking from poorly-maintained vehicles, excess fertilizer from landscaping activities, sediments loosened due to erosion and other forms of land-based pollutants carrying substances that ultimately harm Maui’s nearshore reef ecosystem.

Participants should bring a water bottle and sun protection; other necessary materials and refreshments will be provided.

The volunteer project is open to ages 12 and up; all youth must be accompanied by an adult. To sign up, or ask any questions about the event, contact Liz Foote at (808) 283-1631 or WestMauiKumuwai@gmail.com.

More on this and other events can be found on the West Maui Kumuwai Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WestMauiKumuwai.

To learn more about stormwater management on Maui, visit: www.mauicounty.gov/2129/Storm-Water-Management-Program.

This effort is supported by the County of Maui Department of Public Works, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources-Division of Aquatic Resources, and Maui Ocean Center.