Kipahulu Moku CBSFA Public Hearing


UPDATE: Due to the ongoing wildfire recovery efforts on Maui, this public hearing has been rescheduled to Thursday, November 2, 2023. A detailed announcement outlining how to participate and provide testimony will be posted to the DAR website once the official public hearing notice is published in the Star Advertiser.

Kipahulu Moku CBSFA presentation to Board of Land & Natural Resources, May 26, 2023

Kipahulu Moku CBSFA

View our video presentation highlighting CBSFA code of conduct and proposed rules

View of Virtual Huaka‘i video created by students from Hāna School, including CBSFA plans

Follow Kipahulu Moku on Instagram for CBSFA updates

Kīpahulu ‘Ohana has formally invited the State Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) to designate Kīpahulu moku’s nearshore waters as a Community-Based Subsistence Fishing Area (CBSFA).

Families in East Maui continue to maintain a significantly subsistence-based lifestyle with traditional fishing, hunting and farming practices updated with appropriate modern methods and tools. Families refer to the ocean as their icebox and the mountain as their pantry, and to this day many families supplement their diets through subsistence practices, and actively pass on these traditions to the younger generations.

Through our 2011 Malama I Ke Kai Community Action Plan, developed over two years with the support of The Nature Conservancy-Maui Marine Program and other partners, with input from more than 50 community members, fishermen, scientists, managers, and teachers, Kīpahulu ‘Ohana has identified the unsustainable harvest of fish, limu (seaweed), and ‘opihi (limpets) as pressing issues contributing to the degradation of the marine environment within the proposed CBSFA designation area. The unsustainable harvest of marine resources leads to decreased productivity and diversity. Harvesting species out of season (during spawning times), harvesting undersized or reproductive individuals, or harvesting too many individuals contributes to the decline of target species.

Over the years, as negative impacts of unsustainable harvesting have caused noticeable decline in the abundance of resources, community members have become increasingly frustrated with the ineffectiveness of state-level management and one-size-fits-all rules that don’t account for local biological, ecological and socioeconomic factors. This has resulted in conflicts between users, renegade actions to protect resources, and continuing decline of resources.

The proposal to designate Kīpahulu moku as a CBSFA was one of the priority actions identified in the Malama I Ke Kai plan in order to address these issues.

Hawaiʻi’s CBSFA designation formally recognizes local communities as valued partners in protecting natural resources, and reaffirms and protects traditional and customary practices for subsistence and culture.

The Kipahulu Ohana believes that a CBSFA designation and collaborative management plan can be a tool to help reduce or eliminate unsustainable harvest by changing fishing behavior, allowing fish populations to stabilize and hopefully recover. This will enable future generations to access marine resources for subsistence use and customary practice.

For several years, Kipahulu has been conducting outreach activities to gather input and grow support for CBSFA designation,  including community meetings, individual and family interviews and talk-story sessions, and educational tables at local festivals and other events.

In April 2016, Kipahulu Ohana submitted our Letter of Inquiry to DAR as the initial step in the process, and in July 2016 the Kipahulu received a feedback form from DAR which indicated formal acceptance of our Letter of Inquiry with instructions to proceed in the application process.

In October 2019, Kipahulu Ohana submitted our official Kipahulu Moku CBSFA Proposal and Management Plan (PDF), along with the Administrative Record (PDF) of supporting documentation.

Through 2020-2022, Kipahulu Ohana and DAR hosted numerous informational and scoping meetings and fisher consultations to gather feedback on the CBSFA proposal.

In September 2022, Kipahulu Ohana submitted a revised Kipahulu Moku CBSFA Proposal and Management Plan (PDF), along with the updated Administrative Record (PDF), incorporating the feedback received through the scoping meetings and consultations.

Please view our video presentation for an overview of the code of conduct and proposed rules.

Kipahulu Ohana would like to express our appreciation to Harold K.L. Castle Foundation and the Hawaii Tourism Authority for their support of our CBSFA process, including this website.

Please note that the proposed rules below are still in a draft form, and we are open for input and suggestions from community members and other stakeholders of how to best refine the rules to achieve the desired purpose, as we move through the CBSFA application process. 

Please send comments or questions about our CBSFA proposal to

CBSFA Resources

According to the Community-based Subsistence Fishing Area Designation Procedures Guide (PDF) published by the Division of Aquatic Resources in 2014:

[The] legislature passed Hawaiʻi Revised Statutes (HRS) §188-22.6 in 1994 which gave the DLNR the authority to create community-based subsistence fishing areas (CBSFAs) for the purpose of protecting and reaffirming fishing practices customarily and traditionally exercised for purposes of native Hawaiian subsistence, culture, and religion. Under HRS §188-22.6, the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) can designate community-based subsistence fishing areas and carry out fishery management strategies for such areas by adopting rules in accordance with the administrative rule-making procedures for state agencies outlined in HRS Chapter 91. In addition, the CBSFA statute requires that community organizations propose CBSFAs to the DLNR for consideration by submitting a management plan which includes regulatory recommendations.

… CBSFAs represent a state recognized avenue for community groups to mālama‘āina by proposing regulatory recommendations and management activities to sustain the health and abundance of marine resources for current and future generations. In this context, place-based knowledge, acquired through generations of observation, along with the cultural values and associated codes of conduct traditionally governing pono fishing practices, form the foundations of community proposed fisheries management strategies. In this way, CBSFAs represent a more bottom-up approach to fisheries management that is community driven and place-based in nature, as well as an avenue for the DLNR to fulfill its obligation to protect traditional and customary practices as a matter of law, the public trust, and ceded lands trust."