RESEARCH

RESEARCH PROJECTS

PI-CASC supports research that generates actionable climate science within several key focus areas defined by regional stakeholder needs.

Student examines plants along a greenery-bordered path

2020 SURF Projects

Three students completed projects in climate adaptation science for the 2020 SURF program, investigating salinity tolerance in coastal plants, fire-plant interactions, and new techniques to improve reforestation efforts.
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A shallow valley is covered with dead brown grass and a scattering of dead and dying tree trunks.

Malo‘o ka lani, wela ka honua (When the sky is dry, the earth is parched)

PI: Christian Giardina, Research Ecologist, Inst. of Pacific Islands Forestry, US Forest Service
Co-PI: Katie Kamelamela, Postdoctoral Researcher, Akaka Foundation for Tropical Forests
Funded: FY2020
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Hilly barren landscape with low burnt browned grass

Biochar as a mitigation tool for soil rehabilitation in Guam’s badlands and savannah grasslands

PI: Mohammad Golabi, Professor of Soil Science, University of Guam
Co-PI: Patrick Keeler, Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, University of Guam
Funded: FY2020
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A small reef fish, with bright yellow rings around the eyes.

How will changing reefscapes affect the prevalence of ciguatera on Hawaiian reefs?

PI: Tim Grabowski, Fish Biologist, Hawai‘i Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, USGS/Adjunct Professor of Marine Science, UH Hilo
Co-PI: Nikola Rodriguez, Tropical Conservation Biology & Environmental Science, UH Hilo
Funded: FY2020
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A small, brown bird sits on the branch of a tree

Development of an early warning system for climate-change related invasion by mosquitoes into Hakalau Forest NWR

PI: Patrick Hart, Professor of Biology, UH Hilo
Co-PI: Stephanie Mladinich, Tropical Conservation Biology & Environmental Science, UH Hilo
Funded: FY2020
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View down a gentle, grassy, hill-bounded swale, with over a dozen people working at pulling up the grass.

Social equity in natural resource management: A case study from southern Guam

PI: Romina King , Associate Professor of Geography, University of Guam
Co-PI: Marybelle Quinata , Micronesian Studies Department, University of Guam
Funded: FY2020
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Corals spread across an outcrop, some beautifully purple, others deadly white

Using cutting-edge technology to assess coral reef bleaching and recovery in Guam and CNMI

PI: Romina King, Associate Professor of Geography, University of Guam
Co-PI: Ved ChirayathResearch Scientist, NASA Ames Research Center
Funded: FY2020
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Underwater image of colorful varieties of coral

Identifying locations for coral reef climate resilience

PI: Monica Moritsch, Research Ecologist, USGS Western Geographic Science Center
Funded: FY2020
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Healthy coral outcrop bursting with colorful reef fish

How ridge-to-reef governance in Palau can enhance coastal food security

PI: Kirsten Oleson, Associate Professor of Ecological Economics, UH Mānoa
Co-PI: Michelle Harangody, Department of Geography and Environment, UH Mānoa
Funded: FY2020
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Spume-capped waves crash against a low black basalt rock shoreline

A shoreline inventory for Hawai‘i island to increase resilience

PI: Ryan Perroy, Associate Professor of Geography and Environmental Science, UH Hilo
Co-PI: Aloha Kapono, Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science Program, UH Hilo
Funded: FY2020
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A dry grassy landscape of gently rolling hillocks and occasional trees.

Optimizing techniques to restore forest to increase endangered species habitat and mitigate future drought

PI: Jonathan Price, Professor of Geography , UH Hilo
Co-PI: Amberly Pigao, Tropical Conservation Biology & Environmental Science, UH Hilo
Funded: FY2020
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View down a white sandy beach overhung with palms, being lapped by sparkling waters with steep green mountains further along the coast

Sea-level rise viewer for American Samoa

PI: Phil Thompson, Associate Director of UH Sea Level center, UH Mānoa
Co-PI: Carla Baizeau, Department of Oceanography, UH Mānoa
Co-Is: Kelley Anderson Tagarino, Extension Specialist, American Samoa Community College; Justin E. Stopa, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa; Curt Storlazzi, Research Geologist, USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
Funded: FY2020
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Underwater scene of colorful corals and fish

Sea-level rise impacts on coral reef and mangrove interactions and resulting coastal flooding hazards

PI: Curt Storlazzi, Research Geologist, USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
Co-I: Karen Thorne, Research Ecologist, USGS Western Ecological Research Center
Funded: FY2020
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Angled aerial view of wetlands near a sandy coastline

Connecting ecosystems from mountains to the sea in a changing climate

PI: Yinphan Tsang, Associate Professor of Natural Resources and Environmental Management, UH Mānoa
Co-PI: Maxime Gayte, Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Management, UH Mānoa
Funded: FY2020
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A narrow stream runs between vegetation covered banks

Impacts of extreme events on native and nonnative Hawaiian aquatic species

PI: Yinphan Tsang, Associate Professor of Natural Resources and Environmental Management, UH Mānoa
Co-Is: Abigail Lynch, Climate Adaptation Science Centers; Timothy Grabowski, Hawaiʻi Cooperative Fishery Research Unit
Funded: FY2020
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