In race for governor, candidates play up differences on climate change, housing plans

In a new series this week, Hawaii News Now tackles two of the critical issues that the next governor will face.
Published: Oct. 10, 2022 at 5:39 PM HST|Updated: Oct. 13, 2022 at 12:58 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - In the race for governor, Josh Green is criticizing Duke Aiona for lacking substantial policies on climate change.

But Aiona says Green’s clean energy plans sound just like the Lingle-Aiona administration.

In a new series this week, Hawaii News Now tackles two of the critical issues that the next governor will face.

Josh Green expects dealing with sea level rise to cost the state $25 billion over 30 years.

Should homeowners be compensated if forced to retreat?

“Yes. If people are forced to retreat. If people are forced to shut down,” Green said.

Aiona disagreed.

“Would I compensate them? No, I don’t think it’s government’s responsibility to compensate someone who is on their own, decided to build a home on the shoreline, knowing full well what can happen,” said Aiona.

Green supports a climate impact fee to help pay for increasing infrastructure costs, while Aiona wants an expedited process and more resource managers if needed.


“I would have to see, you know, what’s the, you know, what’s really bogging them (DLNR) down,” Aiona said.

“If we let it linger, like how it has been lingering, we’re going to have probably more houses that are going to be falling into into the ocean and we’re going to have a desecration of our shoreline,” he added.

Green said, “The roads that run along the shore are pretty significant and as they crumble, especially on the neighbor islands, when they crumble into the sea, you can have entire communities isolated.”

[SPECIAL SECTION: Election 2022]

“So you can’t leave people isolated so we’ll have to pay for infrastructure,” he added.

Both candidates are touting their housing plans.

Green wants the state to help the city crackdown on off-shore owned illegal Airbnbs.

Aiona wants resale restrictions tied to local income.

“You have to keep it local and you have to keep it tied to local wages, it can be solved,” said Aiona.

Green said, “There’ll be a housing czar in my administration, in my office, sitting next to me so that we don’t let it slip. That’s one we’ve already promised. 10,000 units in a first term if we’re selected.”