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Lingle establishes two Hawaii Surfing Reserves

MEDIA RELEASE

Gov. Linda Lingle has issued an executive order to establish surfing reserves at two of Hawaii’s most important and well-known surfing areas. The executive order “acknowledges the cultural, sports and historic significance of important surf sites in Hawaii,” and “raises public awareness about the importance of protecting, nourishing and developing Hawaii’s world famous surf sites.”

The governor’s order establishes the Duke Kahanamoku Surfing Reserve, which includes surf breaks bounded by the Ala Wai and the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium, as well as the North Shore Surfing Reserve, which includes surf breaks from Alii Beach in Haleiwa to Sunset Beach. Both surf reserves are located off the waters of Oahu.

“Hawaii has some of the most famous and beautiful surf sites in the world and its native sons, such as Sen. Fred Hemmings, have deservedly gained international recognition in the sport of surfing,” Lingle said. “I am pleased we can formally acknowledge the cultural, sports, and historic significance of surfing in Hawaii.”

The executive order does not provide any funding for the surfing reserves, but enables the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), which is statutorily responsible for managing all waters and coastal areas of the state, to receive donations that could be used for signs or markers that identify the surf reserves.

In addition, under the executive order, DLNR may assist in promoting federal, state and county collaboration in identifying, nourishing and protecting Hawaii surfing reserves.

The idea to designate surfing reserves in Hawaii was first introduced during the 2010 session of the state Legislature by Hemmings, a former World Surfing Champion. Hemmings’ bill was approved unanimously by the State Senate, but was recommitted by the House in the final hours of the last day of the session.

Hemmings’ idea to establish surfing reserves in Hawaii was patterned after the National Surfing Reserves Australia program, which currently recognizes about a dozen iconic surfing sites throughout Australia because of their intrinsic environmental, heritage, sporting and cultural value.

“Hawaii is the genesis of surfing,” Hemmings said. “We must regain the cultural and sports leadership of the world of surfing, and surfing reserves is a step in that direction. I appreciate and thank Gov. Lingle for establishing surfing reserves for Hawaii.”

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10-07

WHEREAS, Hawaii has some of the most famous surf sites in the world; and

WHEREAS, designation of Hawaii surfing reserves would acknowledge the cultural, sports, and historic significance of important surf sites in Hawaii; and

WHEREAS, designation of Hawaii surfing reserves would raise public awareness about the importance of protecting, nourishing, and developing Hawaii’s world famous surf sites; and

WHEREAS, designation as a Hawaii surfing reserve would provide recognition of world famous surfing sites as areas that have quality surf and significant cultural, historical, and sports value and promote the long-term preservation of Hawaii surfing reserves and begin the process to recognize these areas as objects of historic interest under section 6E-31, Hawaii Revised Statutes; and

WHEREAS, surfing may include any physical interaction with the surf, including activities such as bodysurfing, bodyboarding, surfing, surfskiing, surfboating, stand-up paddle boarding, and all forms of surf lifesaving and lifeguarding, including tow-in surfing; and

WHEREAS, section 26-15(b), Hawaii Revised Statutes, provides that the State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) shall, among other things, manage and administer the public lands of the State and all water and coastal areas of the State (except commercial harbors), including all activities thereon and therein, including, but not limited to, boating, ocean recreation, and coastal areas programs; and

WHEREAS, DLNR understands the value of surfing reserves and will undertake the steps necessary to designate them as historic landmarks under section 6E-31, Hawaii Revised Statutes; and

WHEREAS, numerous world and Hawaii surfing and conservation organizations and associations support the establishment of surfing reserves;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, LINDA LINGLE, Governor of Hawaii, pursuant to my executive authority under Article V of the Constitution of the State of Hawaii, and all other applicable authority, do hereby order that the following Hawaii surfing reserves are hereby established and
recognized:

1. The Duke Kahanamoku Surfing Reserve, which shall include all surf breaks bounded by the Ala Wai and the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium on the Island of Oahu, and

2. The North Shore Surfing Reserve, which shall include all surf breaks from AIii beach in Haleiwa to Sunset Beach, on the Island of Oahu.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a designated Hawaii surfing reserve: (i) shall include a part of the coastal environment recognized for the cultural and historical quality and consistency of its surf and its long-term and ongoing relationship between the surf and surfers; and (ii) shall include the beach and adjacent surf zones from the high water mark and may include features of the marine and coastal zone that intrinsically enhance any aspect of the surfing experience.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that DLNR may:

1. Receive gifts provided by surfing organizations and associations or other organizations or individuals for the placing of appropriate signs or markers that are designed to commemorate and identify a Hawaii surfing reserve; and

2. Assist in promoting federal, state, and county collaboration in identifying, nourishing, and protecting Hawaii surfing reserves.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this Executive Order is not intended to create, and does not create, any rights or benefits, whether substantive or procedural, or enforceable at law or in equity, against the State of Hawaii or its agencies, departments, entities, officers, employees, or any other person.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that these provisions are subject to amendment by Executive Order.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to affixed the Great Seal of the State of Hawaii.

DONE at the State Capitol, Honolulu,
State of Hawaii this 1st day of June, 2010.

LINDA LINGLE
Governor of Hawaii

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