HONOLULU (AP) - Federal scientists say discharge from a sewage treatment facility in West Maui has been damaging the coral reefs off Kahekili Beach Park for years.
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports that the U.S. Geological Survey study found pollution is not only eroding the reef, but is also inhibiting new coral growth.
Maui County spokesman Rod Antone, however, said on Friday that the findings contradict data from other studies that show the coral reef at Kahekili is getting healthier.
The question of whether coral reefs are being damaged by sewage from Maui County's injection wells has been the subject of litigation and out-of-court negotiations for nearly a decade.
The facility injects roughly 4 million gallons of treated sewage into the ground near the ocean each day.