Dune Restoration is not Rocket Science
Updated: Aug 8, 2020
Published in Maui News 11/16/19
The concepts of dune restoration are not complicated. Protect the sand dunes from erosion and they will protect the shore line. Try to keep foot traffic on the pathways and off of the dune face. Encourage native dune plants since they are what Mother Nature intended. Eliminate over-spray landscape irrigation from any dune. Some coastline residents and resorts still don’t understand the importance of “no dune irrigation”, but Maui County Parks Department gets it, and works to control irrigation. Mahalo Maui County! Dune Restoration is not rocket science. It does not need to be graphed out for the general public. They get this!
Our job as volunteers is to work hands-on with the State and County to maintain dune-friendly pathways that are available for public beach access. The State is responsible for beach/shoreline areas and the County is responsible for the public lands mauka of the dunes. With tidal fluctuation the boundaries can sometimes be blurry. The State and County work well together however, and jurisdictions are well understood. Pathway maintenance is key. Maui has a transient public beach population that changes daily. That means pathways need to be visible and protected with signs and borders so even first-timers readily comprehend where walking is best.
As volunteers, we try to view beaches and access paths with fresh eyes every day, as if it was the first time we have ever been to that beach. The perspective is refreshing. What a blessing our beach parks are. Lucky we live Maui!