HONOLULU, Sept. 29, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Pomaika’i Partners’ Laukiha’a Farms and the nonprofit Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative (HLRI) today announced a partnership to create the Hawaiian Legacy Forest at Haleiwa on Oahu’s North Shore.
The initial project will span approximately 400 acres of land and will be home to up to 150,000 newly planted native and endemic Legacy Trees, making it the largest managed endemic Hawaiian forest on Oahu. “These trees will be part of a permanently managed native ecosystem that will never be clearcut. This forest will enhance our watershed, prevent runoff that damages our reefs, provide native habitat for some of Hawaii’s rarest birds, and become a living resource for the Hawaiian culture and Haleiwa community,” said Francis Wong, Board Chair, HLRI.
“The Hawaiian Legacy Forest at Haleiwa is an integral component of an agricultural, ecological and cultural collaboration by Laukiha’a Farms that will not only restore the land but serve as a world class example of how agroforestry can sustain both the community and the environment, said Denise Albano, Project Director.
HLRI is dedicating a team of trained foresters to clear the land of invasive plant species such as strawberry guava, ginger, and other major ecological threats to Hawaii’s native forests. Replanting will include endemic koa, kou, milo, ‘ōhi’a, naio, and ‘iliahi trees, as well as endemic understory species planted over a contiguous mix of forest, streambeds, and cliffsides. Trees will be planted with the help of community volunteers, ecotourism, and Legacy Tree Partners. In partnership with Legacy Carbon LLC, the Hawaiian Legacy Forest at Haleiwa will also hold the distinction of being part of the only certified carbon offset program anywhere in Hawaii, and the first international Gold Standard certified forest carbon project in North America.
“Originally royal crown lands owned by Princess Victoria Kamamalu, heir to the throne of the Hawaiian Kingdom, this reforestation effort underscores our commitment to responsible operations that honor the historical, cultural, and environmental importance of these lands. It is so fitting to honor her legacy by returning this historic area to permanently endemic Hawaiian forest,” said Justin Alexander, partner, Pomaika’i Partners.
HLRI uses state-of-the-art RFID technology to record each tree’s growth, health, location and provides drone video imagery which allows tree sponsors to track their tree online throughout the lifetime of the tree. To date, HLRI and sustainable forestry company HLH, LLC have planted more than 590,000 native and endemic Hawaiian trees across the state.
The inaugural planting will be announced soon and the community is invited. Follow LegacyForest.org/Haleiwa for details.
About HLRI: Through state-of-the-art technologies and methodologies, the nonprofit organization HLRI works with landowners to establish and preserve economically viable and sustainable endemic Hawaiian forests, protect endangered species, sequester carbon and recharge watersheds. HLRI’s Legacy Trees are planted for permanent reforestation and are sponsored by businesses and individuals, with a portion of proceeds donated to charities worldwide. For more, visit LegacyTrees.org. Learn more about Legacy Carbon at LegacyCarbon.com.
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