The Hanalei Watershed Hui Educational Program

HWH provides marine based learning experiences focused on understanding the historical, cultural and contemporary management strategies and foster stewardship of near shore resources.

“HWH strives to malama the ahupua’a (watershed) of Hanalei guided by the Hawaiian principles of malama ‘aina (sustainability and stewardship), pono (integrity and balance), laulima (cooperation), and aloha, especially as it applies to cultural equity and respect. We endeavor to keep protected what has been protected, to embrace and support those actions that are appropriate to this place and its heritage, those actions that contribute to our shared vision”


It's The Science

The Hanalei River system is one of the longest streams in Hawaii, and runs through habitats from the summit bogs of Waialeale to the coral reefs in Hanalei Bay.

Changes in weather patterns and the frequency and intensity of extreme events, sea-level rise, coastal erosion, coral reef bleaching, ocean acidification, and contamination of freshwater resources by salt water are among the impacts small islands face.

Reports & Studies

The Hawaii Watershed Guidance is a streamline version of EPA's Handbook for Developing Watershed Plans to Restore and Protect Our Waters (March 2008). It was created to help local community organizations understand and prepare watershed plans in compliance with EPA guidelines for 319 funding and also serve as a means to reintroduce the 6217 (g) measures. The Responsible Agencies and Authorities: A Supplemental For Hawaii Management Measures list all the agencies involved in oversight and implementation of Hawaii's Management Measures.


This work aimed to understand the distribution of five bacterial pathogens in O’ahu coastal streams and relate their presence to microbial indicator concentrations, land cover of the surrounding watersheds, and physicalechemical measures of streamwater quality. (2011)
This study quantifies dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN), soluble reactive phosphorous (SRP), and microbial pollutant inputs to a tropical embayment, Hanalei Bay, Kaua'i, Hawai'i from rural watersheds during two field excursions during non-storm conditions.
Submarine groundwater discharge represents a potentially important source of freshwater, nutrients and pollutants to the coastal ocean. In Hanalei Bay, high fecal indicator bacteria counts, particularly after heavy rains, raised suspicions that sewage was leaching into groundwater and discharging directly into the bay.
Water quality monitoring in Hanalei Bay has documented intermittent high concentrations of nutrients and fecal indicator bacteria in nearshore waters and spurred concern that contaminated groundwater might be discharging into the bay.
Pathogenic bacteria and viruses are sometimes detected in coastal waters. Incidents of high levels of pathogenic bacteria have been correlated with occurrence of acute gastrointestinal illness in recreational beach users and result in beach closures that impact coastal communities.

Kauai Wildlife Refuges

Hawaiian and Pacific Island National Wildlife Refuge found on Kauai:

Hanalei National Wildlife Refuge

Photo of Hanalei NWR
Hanalei National Wildlife Refuge - Photo credit USFWS

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Encircled by waterfall-draped mountains, the picturesque Hanalei Valley on the north shore of Kaua'i harbors the Hanalei National Wildlife Refuge.

Hule'ia National Wildlife Refuge

Photo of Huleia NWR
Hule'ia National Wildlife Refuge - Photo credit USFWS

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Located on the southeast side of Kaua'i Hule'ia National Wildlife Refuge lies adjacent to the famous Menehune Fish Pond, a registered National Historic Landmark.

Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge

Photo of Kilauea Point NWR
Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge - Photo credit USFWS

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The refuge is located 2 miles north of historic Kilauea town on the northernmost tip of Kaua'i. It is the only refuge on Kaua'i open to the public and providing visitor services. Kilauea Point is a must-see destination for island visitors and residents alike.