Hawai'i has been blessed with consistent rainfall, advantageous geology, and high quality drinking water stores for centuries. Recent findings, however, have raised concern about long-term fresh water security for our Islands. University of Hawai'i and other scientists have documented troubling trends including reduced rainfall, higher evaporation rates, and declining stream flows in recent decades. These findings, coupled with the demand of an ever-increasing population, suggest that Hawai'i is entering an era of fresh water uncertainty.
The Hawai'i Fresh Water Initiative (Initiative) was launched in 2013 to bring multiple, diverse parties together to develop a forward thinking and consensus-based strategy to increase water security for the Hawaiian Islands. Organized by the independent, nonprofit Hawai'i Community Foundation (HCF), the Initiative relied on a blue ribbon advisory panel of individuals (Hawai'i Fresh Water Council or Council) with deep knowledge of water and a collaborative spirit to articulate a vision for a more secure and sustainable water future based on shared values, and shared sacrifice. This Blueprint is the result of their work, and provides Hawai'i policy and decision-makers with a set of solutions that have broad, multisector support in the fresh water community that should be adopted over the next three years to put Hawai'i on a path toward water security. The Blueprint also builds on the good work, findings, and recommendations over the years by preceding stewards of Hawai'i's most important resource.