Kohala Institute operates 2,400 acres including the ahupua‘a of ‘Iole, one of the few such traditional land divisions still intact. Historically, ahupua‘a – land divisions stretching from the sea to the mountain – provided the diverse resources that nourished a community and included systems of cooperation and sustainability. We continue that tradition of sustainability today. Our initiatives touch on multiple aspects of sustainability:
- We operate a 5-acre pilot farm with a planned 30-acre facility showcasing successful and sustainable methods of growing food to meet Hawai‘i Island’s food security needs.
- We offer programs that explore the connection we have to the food we eat through a multitude of agricultural methods and that examine how best practices across historic periods can coexist in one area to restore North Hawaii’s legacy as the breadbasket of food production.
- We are constructing 12 housing units for farm laborers.
- We jointly own Kohala Mountain Fish Company, which features a hatchery, grow operation and processing facility. We hope to serve as a catalyst for increased agricultural and aquaculture-based job creation and economic development in North Hawai‘i.
- We are designing and working on a comprehensive microgrid to generate electricity from renewable resources to meet our energy needs.