Voyaging Food Innovators

Before the globalization of the industrial revoultion, most island nations were self-reliant. They grew and harvested as needed, with much care and very little waste. They lived well-connected to their lands because it was necessary in order to survive. Islands had to be sustainable units because they were isolated from other resources. The idea of sustainability and living resourcefully within one’s means was not …

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A Brief Ecology Lesson: All about those Natives

If you study a map you’ll quickly learn that Hawaiʻi is the most isolated archipelago on planet Earth. For thousands of years, the Hawaiian islands functioned completely as their own units of existence – spared from the threats of overpopulation, pollution, and undesirable foreign influences. Before airplanes and boats, there were only three ways to reach our paradise: wind, wings, …

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The Cozy Corner of Collective Insanity

Many of us consider ourselves researchers or scientists (including social and political scientists). Many of us also consider ourselves advocates. This is probably one of the finer lines to walk, and we’ve picked it as a career path – our raison d’etre. Go us! We have chosen to risk social rejection to help guide the rest of the world to …

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Readying Resilience: Lighting Up Communities During the Holidays

Well, it seems the holiday season is now here in full force. As environmentally conscious folks, we can find plenty to be “bah humbug” about: the waste of paper for wrapping gifts, cutting down trees, and not to mention all of those electricity sucking lights. However, getting upset about this seemingly unnecessary consumer waste is missing the point and overlooks …

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Localized Systems: Sustainability Through Indigenous Knowledge

I was recently reminded of an old Hawaiian proverb: “ʻAʻohe pau ka ʻike i ka hālau hoʻokahi” – “Not all knowledge is learned in one school.”  I feel that this is important for me to emphasize here on The Sustainable Leader because as I write more and more on the topic of the Hawaiian culture, I know that some of …

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Sustainable Systems: An Introduction to the Ahupua’a of Hawaii

After my last article, “From Problems to Solutions,” I was encouraged to write a follow up article. In that last article, I used a lot of Hawaiian words. While I was able to stick to words that can be translated literally, there are some cases where the definition of the word gets lost in the literal translation. I am now …

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Kako’o ‘Oiwi: A Primer

It’s a strange name to some. It’s an overgrown swamp to others. That’s putting it lightly along with missing out on the incredible story behind the He’eia Streambed and Kako’o ‘Oiwi. It was once an ancient agricultural powerhouse, but fell into disuse and saw a rebirth in the last 5 years. While hardly worth a glance while heading to the …

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