United Airlines returns meal service on Guam-Honolulu route

After an absence of years, United Airlines has confirmed the Economy Class meal service has returned on the Guam-Honolulu route, as of Jan. 4.

The travel site liveandletsfly.com has featured the menu out of Honolulu to Guam on its site, as given below. The menu out of Guam is catered from Guam, according to United.

The meal service was removed after the United-Continental merger, though a menu of paid items was offered on the route, with complimentary snacks re-appearing some years later.

  • Breakfast
    • Continental breakfast
      • Yogurt with granola
      • Croissant with butter
      • Fresh cut fruit
      • Granola bar
  • Lunch/Dinner
    • Hawaiian quinoa salad with grilled chicken
      • Hawaiian roll with butter
      • Fresh cut pineapple
      • Hawaiian Host macadamia nuts
    • Guava egg noodle salad with tofu
      • Hawaiian roll with butter
      • Fresh cut pineapple
      • Hawaiian Host macadamia nuts


Federated States of Micronesia Congress considering budget requests from president

The 22nd FSM Congress met with President David W. Panuelo, who is requesting $4.9 million for Capital projects, subsidies, contributions, and for executive branch operations, according to a Jan. 16 release. The requests include

  • Additional funding for the United Nations Multi-Country Officed $250,000 for the FSM Telecommunications Cable Corp, or the Open Access Entity to distinguish it from the FSM Telecommunications Corp., $85,000 in additional funding for the 4th FSM Constitutional Convention;
  • Capital Projects budget items including $313,200 for the operation of national vessels, and slightly more than $2 million for the construction of a new Executive Branch building to house the Department of Education and the Department of Health & Social Affairs.
  • $1 million to continue the repatriation process in 2022, e.g., the cost of pre-quarantine in Guam. About $150,000 donated by the People’s Republic of China, and $850,000 donated by New Zealand, is nearly depleted, according to the release.

Additional discussions on proposed legislation included the Freedom of Information Act; the cybercrimes bill; the noncommunicable diseases bill (which seeks to lessen the occurrence of diabetes and high-blood pressure in the FSM); the passport extension bill, which would increase the life of an FSM passport from five years to 10 years; legislation on the bunkering and provisioning of vessels; legislation for penalties on the importation of prohibited plastic materials; legislation to enhance the secretary of finance’s tax enforcement capacity; and legislation to allow non-profit corporations to become chartered, among others.


COVID enters Palau and other COVID updates:

All travelers entering the Northern Mariana Islands by air or sea will be tested for COVID-19 on arrival and must report to their scheduled 5th-day testing.

For inbound travelers whose final destination is either Rota or Tinian, their 5th-day test will be scheduled in their respective final destination’s health center, according to a Jan. 15 release. From Jan. 17, travelers with arrival dates of Jan.10 through Jan. 15 will be given priority for follow-up testing, as early as their 5th day or as late as their 7th day after arrival. All travelers are encouraged to fill out their health declaration form prior to arrival at www.staysafecnmi.com, where guidelines for unvaccinated travelers are available.

For Guam, the Department of Public Health and Social Services issued DPHSS Guidance Memo 2020-11 Rev. 14 Amendment 1. Effective Jan. 16, DPHSS ceased processing of passengers and airline crew members of flights from foreign countries where vaccination and exception screening is already being facilitated by the airlines in accordance with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. “For passengers and airline crew members on flights that are not subject to the provisions of the October 2021 Presidential Declaration, DPHSS will continue the screening process on departures originating from the NMI, Narita, Honolulu, Island Hopper flights originating from Honolulu, and chartered flights, according to a Jan. 15 release.

Palau has seen 55 new positive cases of COVID among arrivals, as at Jan. 16 and eight active cases in the community. As at Jan. 16, Palau had 92 active cases, 394 individuals in quarantine and 19 individuals “recovered.” The Ministry of Health lists 119 cases since Aug. 20, 2021. The country has also implemented COVID home quarantine guidelines and emergency measures were announced Jan. 14, to include mask wearing indoors and outdoors, and social distancing of three feet. Arrival requirements remain unchanged for pre-arrival testing of fully vaccinated travelers and testing on the fourth day.

According to a Jan. 17 statement from the Office of the President, private and public school in-person classes are suspended until Jan. 21. The Palau High School will continue online learning.


Japanese and Australian group begin energy study for Palau CO2 reduction

Sojitz Corp. will begin a demonstration project together with CS Energy Ltd. and Nippon Engineering Consultants Co. Ltd. to transport renewable hydrogen produced in Australia to Palau for utilization in fuel cells and hydrogen fuel cell vessels. Sojitz’s application for the hydrogen project was selected by the Ministry of the Environment of Japan to receive subsidies under the ministry’s “Pilot Project for Comprehensive Support Throughout the Whole Hydrogen Supply Chain Abroad.” Sojitz and its partners will carry out this demonstration project over the course of three years, from fiscal 2021 to fiscal 2023, according to a Jan. 12 joint release.

The project involves the use of solar power generation to produce green hydrogen in Queensland, Northern Australia, which will then be transported to Pacific Island countries for utilization in small fuel cells and hydrogen fuel vessels that have the potential to popularize hydrogen use on islands. Sojitz will serve as the representative for the project, and the company will provide overall management for the project, conduct a field study in Palau, and support the implementation of equipment.

As joint partners on the project, CS Energy will generate and supply green hydrogen, while Nippon Engineering Consultants will conduct a study of hydrogen applications and forecasted hydrogen demand that accounts for the energy market demands in Pacific Island countries. Nippon Engineering Consultants will also analyze the economic feasibility of marine transport for green hydrogen and the effects of CO2 reduction. Additionally, the demonstration of fuel cells will be conducted by Brother Industries Ltd., which will participate as a subcontractor on the project.

The hydrogen production site in Australian state of Queensland was selected as the ideal location for producing renewable energy due to its vast land area and high level of solar radiation, making it possible to export green hydrogen at a low cost. The Queensland government, which provided support for this application, announced a hydrogen strategy in 2019 which is supporting the development of a large-scale hydrogen industry in Queensland. The experience to be gained in this collaborative project may be applicable to Queensland’s remote communities and islands. The hydrogen produced for this project will be used in Palau, where there is currently a high dependence on fossil fuels for energy.

As part of its efforts to shift towards decarbonization, Palau has committed to achieving a target of 45% renewable energy generation by 2025.


GWA files Motion to Stay; judge denies motion

Guam Waterworks Authority filed a Motion to Stay in the Superior Court of Guam, “seeking to prevent the Court from further action on the case to quiet title on GWA’s Northern District Wastewater Treatment Plant until the appeal process of the Court’s recent ruling against GWA’s motion for summary judgement has been completed in the Supreme Court of Guam.” according to a Jan. 14 release. Judge Elyze Iriarte denied the motion.

In the case, which involves the Northern District Wastewater Treatment Plant, GWA said Core Tech International’s claim to have obtained the land through foreclosure is obstructing the public’s right to the land. Core Tech is claiming $220 million for the land, according to the release from GWA.


Guam Taiwan Office announces 2022 aims

Media in Taiwan were sent a release confirming the Guam Taiwan Office will continue expanding bilateral exchanges in areas including tourism, economy, trade, culture and that it hopes to resume direct flights this year.

According to the release, the office held a Lunar New Year luncheon on Jan. 14 with in-person guests and others appearing in pre-recorded videos.


And also:

The Guam Chamber of Commerce announced officers of the board of directors. They are Edward G. Untalan, executive vice president and Guam-CNMI region manager, First Hawaiian Bank, chairman; Christopher Duenas, chief financial officer, Triple J Enterprises, vice chairman; Mark Tokito, senior vice president, Bank of Hawaii, secretary-treasurer. Past Chairwoman Christine Won Pat Baleto, chief financial Officer, Docomo Pacific and Master Franchisee, Pacific Froots LLC; Tae S. Oh, president: Vantage Advertising, Guam Chamber of Commerce President Catherine S. Castro will join the officers to comprise the executive Committee.

Guam Community College hosted the fifth Ship Repair Boot Camp Completion Ceremony on Jan.14. Guam Shipyard was the private-sector partner sponsor for the boot camp. The 21 participants completed seven weeks of training on Jan. 7. The boot camp included courses in Introduction to Carpentry; Electricity Level I; Shielded Metal Arc Welding I; Heartsaver First Aid, CPR, & AED; Work Ethic; OSHA-10; and ACT WorkKeys (National Career Readiness Certificate). mbj