The community of the Maunalua Region depends upon a healthy Maunalua Bay for food, livelihood, cultural preservation and pleasure. For decades now, the community has lamented the continued loss of a once healthy, vibrant bay ecosystem. Experts agree we are approaching Maunalua Bay’s “ocean tipping point,” beyond which recovery is unlikely.

The time to act is now. IMUA MAUNALUA is a project that calls upon the community to “go forward” together, immediately, to improve the health of Maunalua Bay. IMUA MAUNALUA will be a community-based marine planning project: The necessary vehicle to enable community to work together to reverse the trend of degradation, toward a Maunalua Bay that once again supports an intact coral reef ecosystem with native algae and abundant fish, and a diverse local economy.

IMUA MAUNALUA will serve as a roadmap to achieve healthier, sustainable use of the Bay. It will balance the need to restore marine resources and protect the ecosystem, the need to maintain livelihoods and the need to preserve the culture of the Maunalua region. It will be a unified strategy to ensure a robust, vibrant Bay for our children and grandchildren.

IMUA MAUNALUA is a project that will be driven by the knowledge, spirit and passion of the people who work and live in the Maunalua region. This effort will require active and ongoing participation from the community to develop, implement and support the bay-wide marine planning process. IMUA MAUNALUA is being convened by a consortium of organizations and agencies–Hawaii Kai Chamber of Commerce, Malama Maunalua, The Nature Conservancy, and Conservation International-Hawaii, for and with the community. The Department of Land and Natural Resources and Office of National Marine Sanctuaries will serve as ex officio members of the Advisory Council and the Support Team.

IMUA MAUNALUA will address the entire 6.5 square miles of submerged waters of Maunlaua Bay, stretching from Kῡpikipiki‘ō (Black Point) to Kawaihoa (Portlock).

IMUA MAUNALUA was officially launched in September 2015. The bay-wide marine planning project is expected to take two years to complete through a series of monthly planning team meetings. Each interested community group, including divers, fishers, surfers and businesses, will have a nominated member and an alternate to attend monthly planning meetings. The purpose will be to take into account the needs and expectations of all interested community members who want to see an improved Maunalua Bay. They will build the vision, create the plan, and implement the plan. Broader-based IMUA MAUNALUA community listening sessions will be held for all to attend.

To participate or learn more about IMUA MAUNALUA, please contact info@imuamaunalua.org.