Why Are Hawaiians Protesting Atop the World’s Tallest Mountain?
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Native Hawaiians and their supporters are protesting the construction of a new 30 meter telescope atop Mauna Kea, a large mountain on the Big Island of Hawaii.
Hundreds of protesters are camped out at the base of the mountain, blocking the access road to the planned project.
Mauna Kea is sacred ground in native Hawaiian culture. The dormant volcano is the highest point in Hawaii and, when measured from the ocean floor, Mauna Kea is the tallest mountain in the world.
Elder leaders have made it clear that they are not anti-science, but object to the location of the planned telescope for religious and environmental reasons. Previous telescopes in the region have leaked oil and other chemicals into the local ecosystem.
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