There was finally some welcome good news last week for the stalled Thirty Meter Telescope project. Land Department hearings officer Riki May Amano recommended approval of the permit that would allow construction.
She acknowledged the sacred nature of Mauna Kea for many Native Hawaiians, and included many pages of testimony describing the deep and spiritual relationship people have with the mountain.
Amano also laid out the extraordinary efforts the TMT developers made to accommodate that and many other environmental, aesthetic and political concerns. Among other things, .spending more to change the design of the equipment and the dome to lower its profile.
She found the benefits to the community -- economy and science -- outweigh the relatively minor environmental and cultural impact.
Land board approval is expected since boardmembers approved it once before. The supreme court should also finally endorse this lengthy approval process.
But then will come the real test when opponents once take to the mountain again to place their bodies in front of the construction equipment. How Governor Ige handles that may be the biggest test of career.
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