Sophie Cocke

Reporter

Hawaii’s Beaches Are Disappearing. New Legislation Could Help ... if It’s Enforced.

A legal loophole allowed wealthy property owners to protect their real estate at the expense of Hawaii’s coastlines. Now, the state Legislature is considering bills to crack down on the destructive practices, but questions around enforcement remain.

Hawaii Officials Promise Changes to Seawall Policies That Have Quickened Beach Destruction

Seawalls erode Hawaii’s beaches, but the state has been lax about approving them and disorganized about enforcing the law. Officials now pledge action, after a Honolulu Star-Advertiser and ProPublica investigation.

Officials Let Hawaii’s Waterfront Homeowners Damage Public Beaches Again and Again

Everybody knows that seawalls cause beach loss, and Hawaii law forbids building them. But Honolulu County officials have granted exemptions to 46 homeowners over the past two decades even as a quarter of Oahu’s beaches have disappeared.

Hawaii’s Beaches Are Disappearing

Major islands have lost nearly a quarter of their beaches in the last century. The culprit? Seawalls and other barriers erected by wealthy homeowners.

How Famous Surfers and Wealthy Homeowners Are Endangering Hawaii’s Beaches

Hawaii’s beaches are public land, which officials are obligated to protect and preserve. But a state agency has repeatedly allowed homeowners, including surfer Kelly Slater, to use tactics that protect property while speeding up the loss of beaches.

Oceanfront Property Tied to Obama Granted Exemption From Hawaii’s Environmental Laws

Honolulu officials have granted an exception to the state’s beach protections, clearing the way for a controversial multimillion-dollar renovation of a century-old seawall at a property owned by the chair of the Obama Foundation.

Obama and the Beach House Loopholes

Although Hawaii has laws meant to preserve disappearing shorelines, beachfront property owners have been able to bypass them. That’s what happened at an expansive coastal estate officials say the Obamas will live in.

Burial Site Found on a Property Tied to Obama, Causing Tension With Native Hawaiians

After Native Hawaiian remains were found on the multimillion-dollar oceanfront lot being developed by the chair of the Obama Foundation, a state official decided to relocate the remains. Kamuela Kala‘i is speaking up for her ancestors.

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