Nov. 20 – The state agency charged with protecting Hawaii’s public beaches and coastal ecosystems says it can’t accept a request by a Sunset Beach homeowner who poured concrete on the public beach to now install a temporary barrier like a so-called burrito support to protect his homes.
The state agency tasked with protecting Hawaii’s public beaches and coastal ecosystems says it cannot support a request by a Sunset Beach homeowner who poured concrete on the public beach to put up a temporary barrier like a so-called burrito now install to protect him houses.
Josh VanEmmerik as he poured concrete on the beach to protect his property from heavy surf in September. The Ministry of Land and Natural Resources then sent him a notice of alleged violation of the concrete, rebar and other unauthorized materials that stood in front of his properties at 59-147 A Ke Nui Road and 59-147.
DLNR warned Van Emmerik that if he does not remove the concrete and other unauthorized materials within 30 days of receiving the Sept. 30 notice, he could face a fine of $15,000 per day per violation.
VanEmmerik is also facing possible prosecution and a fine from the Honolulu City and County Department of Planning and Permissions for the concrete earlier this month. VanEmmerik was granted a 60-day extension after telling DLNR that he would remove the concrete by mid-December, but he also asked DLNR to give him permission to build another temporary barrier, such as a barrier, for a year. B. a burrito system to install. The systems consist of long tubes filled with hard sand, attached to heavy black tarps.
Coastal geologists have long warned that hardening of the shoreline, whether in the form of dikes, boulders or burritos, is leading to loss of beaches. Oahu has lost about a quarter of its beaches to shore hardening, and coast officials say they’re trying to save the shoreline stretching from Rocky Point to Sunset Beach from the same fate.
DLNR’s Office of Conservation and Coastal Resources said Thursday that Van Emmerik’s request for a temporary barrier is inconsistent with state statutes, including Law 16, which strengthens existing laws against coastal armor, and administrative regulations restricting the issuance of emergency permits for properties prohibit examined for violations.
DLNR had given the previous owner of one of the homes permission to install an emergency burrito system in 2018, but it expired after three years. A violation was served on the property owner in October 2021.
A lawyer for Van Emmerik declined to comment on the case.