Title: Ka papa hana kū.ʻokoʻa (project independence/freedom/self reliance/etc... )
Abstract: Creating a new metric meant specifically for the Island of Hawaii which compares Foods from here with foods from different places using energy cost. Then working towards possibilities which can lead to self-dependence for the island.
Background: Say that we have the ability to grow a head of lettuce on our island using X amount of energy. The way that we are getting that same lettuce now includes the X amount of energy being used to grow it plus the extra energy that is required to package, preserve and transport it. This metric would express that relationship very simply so that anyone can understand the energy cost of their food vs local food. Additionally the labels that are put onto the products that will show the energy cost comparison can also display what type of energy was put into the local foods whether it be clean or not (obviously get more specific). The island itself can produce everything that it needs. I am a descendent of the Native Hawaiians and pre-contact this island was completely self sufficient and supported a population much greater than the one living on it today. I feel the need to help to blend the successful self-dependence of the Hawaii of old with todays technology and opportunities. Our island is so unique because it has the abilities to do things that even the islands right next to us do not. We can harness out geothermal power that other islands don't have, use our immense space and high mountains to generate more energy from our water flow and so many more things. With all of these things we can not only become self sufficient in terms of food, energy, and resources, we can become self sufficient financially to because along with the other islands, the world will need the things that we have excess amounts of such as energy in the form of hydrogen fuel cells and so on.
Purpose: Create a successful metric specific to our island comparing locally grown and imported foods. Also work towards self-sustainability both with food resources etc... and financially.
What to measure: KWh required to get the food into the store here where it is available for purchase.
How to measure: choose a specific item that is both produced here on island and somewhere else in the world. Then track the items shipping to here, along with how much energy was needed to grow and preserve it and record data. for the locally produced item, just track the amount of energy needed to grow it and put it on the truck to drive to the store and record data. Possibly even track specific companies so that the metric can be more broadly applied rather than not being able to be applied at all if a single item has not been added to the metric yet.
Tools/resources Needed: Access to the internet and contact information of people like local farmers that can give me helpful information on the energy cost to get their product into the stores.
Impact: encourage the local population to buy and eat locally by putting the energy that they are wasting by not eating locally right in front of their faces in the form of this metric. Create a basis for the island to be self-sufficient.
Legacy: Leave the process used to record the data along with the connections established doing it open to the next student that takes the project over. (legacy unclear because I just started this and I'm not exactly sure how it will go, will add to this later).