To protect seabirds, Maui is considering a drastic solution: A ban on all outdoor lighting fixtures

Published: Jul. 13, 2022 at 7:05 PM HST|Updated: Jul. 14, 2022 at 12:01 PM HST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

KAHULUI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Maui County’s proposal to reduce light pollution and protect seabirds is getting community pushback.

Bill 21, if approved, would regulate all outdoor lighting fixtures on Maui to protect Native Hawaiian seabirds from becoming disoriented.

Particularly, the bill would ban most common types of outdoor lighting seen near homes, businesses, and sports complexes.

Critics said the proposal goes too far.

“It’s overkill,” said Kihei resident Madge Schaefer. “They are going to pull the plug on outdoor lighting for people on Maui.”

Schaefer said she has lights all around her South Maui home, which help her feel safe at night.

“The police department, if you go on any site and ask about security, they stress that you should have good lighting in dark places,” Schaefer said.

The proposal presented by Councilmember Kelly King would take away most of those lights.

According to King, reducing the amount of light used would prevent the fledglings from becoming confused.

Meanwhile, Councilmember Yuki Lei Sugimura pointed out that the outdoor lighting bill could affect night events in the community.

“It’s a small price to pay to save our endangered seabirds,” said King. She added the limited blue wavelength would be healthier for humans to be around.

The Maui County Council will vote on the bill on Friday.

They are calling on the public to voice their opinions. For more details on providing a testimony, click here.

Copyright 2022 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.