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Green Practices for EcoTourism & Sustainable Community Living
We want you to have a pleasurable ecotourist experience at Hedonisia Hawaii.
1 - Restoration. We restored the Hedonisia property from its past use as a junkyard to lush tropical gardens with many delicious fruit trees and beautiful tropical plants. The world has been so poisoned by the activities of Man that we have to learn how to restore Mother Nature in addition to preserving the few wild spaces that are left! That is exactly what we have done over the years at Hedonisia. There are still a few rusted vehicles that remain from the old days but now we are a living of ecotourism in Hawaii.
2 - Reduce & Recycle. As best as possible, we recycle all bottles, glass, cans, plastic bottles, paper, scrap metal, old clothing, and other items by taking the time to properly sort them and then bring them to the nearby county-run Kea'au Recycling & Reuse Center.
3 - Re-use: Before something is discarded it can often be reused imaginatively. Old tents can be cut up and sewn together into entirely new structures such as the Guava Hale lodging space. We pride ourselves on the fact that there are hardly any matching sheets and pillowcases on the property! If you have bed sheets that don't match, bring them over!
4 - Energy. Though we are connected to the electric grid, we use energy-efficient appliances and monitor usage. Due to the monopoly of Helco, the local electricity company of Hawaii, we have some of the highest electricity rates in the US. In response, we are part of a class action lawsuit to break this monopoly and offer energy choices to the residents of our beautiful island.
5 - Eco Pest Control for Flies. We now use old red wine or vinegar in the Fly Traps with a couple of drops of dish soap. That attracts and kills them without the horrible smell of the store-bought fly attractant which attracts flies by smelling like death! Red wine or vinegar is a much more natural option than traditional pesticides.
6 - Compost & Mulch. Our lush property has beautiful flowers and a variety of tropical fruits and perennial vegetables. We do not use chemical fertilizers or pesticides at Hedonisia. We use natural green waste mulch that we generate from our compost. Doing the compost ritual is one of the most entertaining rituals because our chickens flock and follow you like the pied piper!
7 - County versus Plastic Bottled Water. We are one of the few locations in the area where we have clean drinkable water available straight from the tap! Guests and Volunteers at Hedonisia enjoy rainforest county water which we put through an additional filter thus reducing the need for plastic bottled water. It tastes great too! We are trying to encourage guests to drink our delicious filtered tap water rather than "plastic water". Bottled Water has been described as one of the biggest business scams in the modern world.
8 - Eco-Building: Our Guest and Volunteer Lodgings are eco-friendly temporary structures designed with sustainable natural resources or salvageable buildings. Much of the materials used for the construction of Ocean View, Kahuna Cabin, Guava Hale, and Bamboo Hut are either from natural renewable sources such as bamboo or are recycled from items that would have otherwise ended up in a landfill. By using recycled and renewable materials in our construction we have been able to save thousands of dollars which then allows us to offer affordable rustic 'green lodgings' in Hawaii.
9 - Local Community Politics, Education & Environmental Activism: Hedonisia is part of the effort to change the current Hawaii County and State zoning statutes to allow for environmentally sustainable community living and alternative building practices. We "go through the system" with exhaustive EPA, County, and Health Department regulations. As a member of the Lower Puna Rising, a grassroots organization working for a sustainable Hawaii, we are trying to change Hawaii Zoning Regulations to encourage eco-friendly community farming to legal precedents in Hawaii and an inspiration for others elsewhere.
10 - Eco-Toilet: For our Volunteers and Eco-tourists at Hedonisia we have created a beautiful Eco-Toilet with a Garden View. Our Sustainable Community eco-toilet is now the most photographed room on the property!
11 - Eco-Friendly Cleaning and Maintenance Supplies. For our community, we only purchase eco-friendly supplies and cleaning items. It does cost us extra but it is a principle that also feels right. The more we support eco-friendly products with our purchasing dollars, the price will eventually come down.
12 - Eco-Shopping & Recycled Item Sales. As an eco-community, we continually try to recycle. Because we have many longer-staying guests and volunteers they often bring and leave their towels. Few people want to take back a wet towel in their suitcase when they leave Hawaii! The ones that are stained we cut up for cleaning rags. However, we wash and store the ones that are in great shape. Then we sell them at a discount price of $3 - $5. This has proven to be a much more eco-friendly way to process our abundance of left-behind towels rather than continually buying new ones.
We donate many "left behind" items to charity. We clean and prepare some items of snorkel gear for discounted resale as a recycled product.
13 - Heart Repairs! This is one of our unique eco-ideas; to repair with love hearts.
The shape of a heart is universal and very flexible. It can cover any blemish or tear and looks light and sensual.
Rather than completely having to repaint walls or put in new insect screens, we simply use heart patches! We either paint a heart over it or sew a heart-shaped patch!
15) Eco-Friendly Substitutes! Visitors to our community leave many things behind, toothpaste, conditioner, shampoo, and towels are just a few! When toiletry items are already used there is a tendency to throw them away because people do not like using used toiletries. To avoid throwing them in the garbage, we have tried to turn these items into a resource that can be used in different ways:
- We use old shampoo as a hand washer or detergent liquid
- Old hair conditioner makes a wonderful fabric softener
- Old toothpaste is a great stove, pot, and kitchen appliance cleaner. Toothpaste is much more edible than the cleaners normally used to get out ground in dirt!
- We also cut up old towels to use as rags thus eliminating the need for paper towels.
14 - Brown Paper Bags & Cardboard
One of the advantages of the ban on plastic bags is that we get lots of boxes and paper bags, which we use to control weeds, for the compost container and to protect trees. However, we get so much we can pile up with brown paper material even more than our agricultural needs.