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Windward O`ahu Streams Win Further Protections

In its landmark August 2000 Waiahole Ditch opinion, the Hawai`I Supreme Court directed the Commission on Water Resources Management to revise its 1997 decision to consider more fully the public interest in protecting and restoring Windward O`ahu stream systems.

The commission's December 2001 decision, however, still lacked the measures necessary to protect stream flows and their use by wildlife, farms, and local communities. Earthjustice, representing several community groups, appealed this commission decision, as well, to the Hawai`I Supreme Court. On June 21, 2004, the court again vacated the commission's decision and sent the case back to the commission for further proceedings. The court specifically directed the commission to reconsider the amount of water the Windward streams need to support native stream life and community uses.