TOPICS: RESEARCH

A next generation beach observing system for Hawaiʻi

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Chip Fletcher Co-INVESTIGATORS: Mark Merrifield, Douglas Luther Graduate Trainee: Kammie Tavares The proposed project will develop and institute a next-generation program for monitoring short and long-term changes in shoreline location and beach width on Hawaiʻi ...

Assessing the vulnerability of coastal wastewater infrastructure to climate change

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Daniele Spirandelli Graduate Trainee: Theresa Dean Clean water is vital for stable economic growth, as well as human and environmental health. Water, wastewater services, and other critical infrastructures enable communities to prosper while protecting sensitive ...

Building Science Experiments

In this episode, we’re designing, building, and conducting underwater experiments to learn about macro algae, fish, and the reef’s interdependencies. — Season 3, Episode 12.  30 second PROMO (Vimeo) Or watch this promo on YouTube FULL EPISODE (Vimeo) Or watch this ...

Coastal Ocean Hawaiʻi Acidification Monitoring Network (COHAMN) and carbonate mineral dissolution study

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Eric DeCarlo Co-INVESTIGATORS: Michael Guidry, Fred Mackenzie Graduate Trainee: Lucie Knor Human emissions of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere have led to partial uptake of this gas by the oceans. This process increases the acidity ...

Collaborative investigation of hydraulic and geochemical connectivity between wastewater and land-use and the oceanic waters of Kāneʻohe Bay, Oʻahu

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Craig Glenn Co-INVESTIGATORS: Henrietta Dulai, Aly El-Kadi, Craig Nelson, Celia Smith, Robert Whittier Graduate Trainee: Michael Mathioudakis The risk that sewage effluent released to the environment poses to human health and the environment is well documented, ...

Collaborative investigation of hydraulic and geochemical connectivity between wastewaters and other land-uses and the ocean waters of Waialua Bay, Oʻahu

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Craig Glenn Co-INVESTIGATORS: Aly El-Kadi, Henrietta Dulai, Celia Smith, Robert Whittier The risk that sewage effluent released to the environment poses to human health and the environment is well documented, and human-health risks and environmental impacts ...

Coral reef CO2 variations at the Coastal Ocean Hawaiʻi Acidification Network (COHAMN): Impact of basin scale oceanographic forcing

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Eric DeCarlo Co-INVESTIGATOR: Michael Guidry Graduate Trainee: Lucie Knor This study offers to continue the highly successful MAPCO2 buoy program that we have been conducting at four coral reef sites around the island of Oʻahu, ...

Coral Reseach on Moorea

In this episode, we learn about the importance of long-term marine reseach in a changing enviornment. Researchers from UC Santa Barbara have been studying the reefs in French Polynesia, on the island of Moorea, for over two decades. Their research ...

Defining Ecosystem-based Management Boundaries Using Genetics and Fisheries Data

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: ROBERT TOONEN Graduate Student: Johanna Wren The exchange of individuals among populations, termed connectivity, is a central element of population persistence and maintenance of genetic diversity, and influences most ecological and evolutionary phenomena. To date, field studies of ...

Do seawalls lower property values?

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: John Lynham Co-INVESTIGATOR: Arlan Brucal Seawalls protect homes but also cause beach loss. Is the benefit worth the cost? One way to estimate the cost is to see how much property values and associated property ...

Economic activity, technological progress, and water resource utilization on Oʻahu

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Peter Fuleky Co-INVESTIGATOR: Kimberly Burnett Graduate Trainee: Sisi Zhang Water management authorities on Oʻahu are increasingly looking for improved methods to plan for future water demand. Our proposed project will provide an innovative way to ...

Enabling real-time predictive modeling of microbial pathogen risk along the Honolulu shoreline

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Craig Nelson Co-INVESTIGATORS: Anna Neuheimer, Grieg Steward, Margaret McManus Graduate Trainee: Jessica Bullington Microbial pathogen contamination of coastal ecosystems in Hawaiʻi is a significant threat to both human and ecological health and can have major impacts on ...

Fish Flow: Filling the gap between spawning and settlement

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Brian Bowen Co-INVESTIGATOR: Stephan Karl Graduate Trainee: Derek Kraft The proposed research will track fish from egg production to the reefs where they settle and enter local fisheries on Oʻahu and adjacent islands. To promote sustainable use of ...

Fish Origins Revealed in DNA

In this episode, we’re investigating the origins of Hawaiian reef fishes with Dr. Brian Bowen’s lab at the Hawai‘i Institute of Marine Biology. The Hawaiian islands are in the middle of the Pacific Ocean Basin and far away from other coral ...

Graduate Trainee Program

GRADUATE TRAINEE PROGRAM The Hawai'i Sea Grant Graduate Trainee program provided skills training to graduate students preparing to become scientists and coastal and ocean resource managers through opportunities to engage in outreach, science communication, and informal education. The goal of ...

Green Stormwater Infrastructure Summit

Tuesday, August 09, 2016 Café Julia, Elizabeth Fuller Hall | 1040 Richards Street | Honolulu, HI Mahalo to all the speakers and summit participants! Full Program and Promotional Flyer (click on image)Press Release and Event Summary Notes (click on image)Additional ...

Growth optimization and survival of the bleaching-resistant coral genus Pavona for reef restoration in Hawaiʻi

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Peter Marko Graduate Trainee: Claire Lewis Healthy corals are crucial to coral reef ecosystems, a fundamental part of the Hawaiian economy.  Unfortunately, coral reefs are threatened worldwide by human activity and climate change.  Nowhere is ...

Harnessing environmental DNA for healthy reefs

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Brian Bowen Co-INVESTIGATOR: Michelle Gaither Graduate Trainee: Cassie Lyons This proposal is to use environmental DNA (eDNA) to monitor the health of coral reefs in protected and non-protected areas around the Hawaiian Islands. All organisms shed eDNA, ...

Hehihehi management for microbial-mediated sediment removal in fishponds

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Kiana Frank Sedimentation has been identified as one of the top five challenges for restoration faced by fishpond stewards. It is not clear what the most effective (and cheap) mechanisms are for removing such large ...

Hurricane with A History

Hawaiian Newspapers Illuminate an 1871 Storm How 114 years of Hawaiian-language newspapers starting in 1834 extend our knowledge of natural disasters into the nineteenth century and to precontact times ...

Impacts of climate changes on a native and an invasive Hawaiian plant using a newly developed Intelligent Plant growing System (IPS)

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Camilo Mora Co-INVESTIGATORS: A Zachary Trimble, Kasey Barton Graduate Trainee: Devon DeBevoise Plants sustain humanity, directly providing food, fiber, fuel, and oxygen, and are the foundation for some of the most diverse habitats in the world. In ...

Inputs driving water quality in Kāneʻohe Bay, Oʻahu

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Henrietta Dulai Co-INVESTIGATORS: Craig Glenn, Paul Lucey Graduate Trainee: Trista McKenzie Recent findings suggest that in the Indo-Pacific region total submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) is estimated to be 3 to 4 times greater than riverine freshwater ...

Integrating climate science with local knowledge through community vulnerability assessment on Kauaʻi

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Daniele Spirandelli Graduate Trainee: Erin "Bear" Braich Like many low-lying coastal regions of the world, the County of Kauaʻi in Hawaiʻi is vulnerable to the impacts of present and future hazards associated with climate change ...

Integration of next-generation sequencing into traditional Hawaiian practices to improve management and restoration of fishponds

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Robert Toonen Graduate Trainee: Kaleonani Hurley Hawaiian fishponds, or loko iʻa, are ancient aquaculture systems that are models of sustainable aquatic resource management based on long-term experience from traditional Native Hawaiian practices. There is much ...

Investigating the origin and impact of sedimentation on the health of Hawaiian mesophotic reefs for sustainable coastal development

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Robert Toonen Graduate Trainee: Evan Barca Hawaiian coral reefs have been valued at over $33.5 billion per year to the US public, and are a major driver of tourism revenue in the State. Yet, coral ...

Ka Pili Kai Spring 2016

Humpback Whale Vocal Communications Between Mothers and Calves Wastewater’s Influence on Coastal Groundwater Quality and the Health of Coral Reefs in Maunalua Bay, O‘ahu Attack of the Drones: Characterizing Groundwater Discharge on Maui Using the Latest Research Tools Simulating Sea-Level ...

Ka Pili Kai Summer 2016

Hawai‘i ’s Water Resources Submarine Groundwater Discharge Water Resources Research Center Highlight: Dr. Aly El-Kadi UH Water Resources Research Center and Sea Grant Partner on $20 M Water Sustainability Project Increasing Access to Safe Drinking Water on Hawai‘i Island The ...

Land-based pollutants in herbivorous reef fishes on Hawaiian reefs

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Megan Donahue Co-INVESTIGATOR: Stephen Karl Graduate Trainee: Julie Zill Pollutants, such as metals, pose a serious threat to coral reef ecosystems. In the past century Hawaiʻi has experienced significant changes in land use, and on ...

Longitudinal assessment: Our Project in Hawaiʻi’s Intertidal (OPIHI)

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Kanesa Seraphin Co-INVESTIGATOR: Joanna Philippoff Graduate Trainee: Florybeth LaValle At the base of the watershed, the intertidal zone is affected by everything that happens upstream, from pollution to development. The intertidal is also vulnerable to threats such ...

Mapping the Freshwater of Hawaiʻi

In this episode, we learn how scientists use chemical signatures to track the flow of freshwater underground and into the ocean as part of the ‘Ike Wai project’s work to map and model the aquifer system of underground, stored freshwater ...

Measuring Mercury in the Clean Room

In this episode, we're invited inside the cleanest room in Hawaii to see how scientists study pollutants in the food web. — Season 3, Episode 16.  30 second PROMO (Vimeo) Or watch this promo on YouTube FULL EPISODE (Vimeo) Or watch ...

Mercury and the Food Web

In this episode, we learn how scientists use isotope analysis to understand food webs and how organisms are interacting.— Season 3, Episode 15.  30 second PROMO (Vimeo) Or watch this promo on YouTube FULL EPISODE (Vimeo) Or watch this episode on ...

Mitigating climate change impacts: What drives thermal resiliency in Hawaiʻi’s coral reefs?

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Ruth Gates Graduate Trainee: Shayle Matsuda Reef-building corals engineer the reef structure that provides habitat for an incredible amount of biodiversity. These diverse ecosystems generate economic services valued at billions of dollars annually and have profound cultural ...

Mutualism on the Reef

In this episode, we're in French Polynesia, on the island of Moorea at the Gump Research Station. Scientists are discovering exciting new examples of mutualism on the reef. — Season 3, Episode 10.  30 second PROMO (Vimeo) Or watch this promo ...

Ongoing Projects

Campus Spatial Survey and Integrated Planning Light Pollution in Hawaiʻi Delamping Initiative Forest City Military Community Energy Efficiency Monitoring Kuykendall Hall Water Resources Working Group ...

Our Project In Hawaiʻi’s Intertidal (OPIHI): Examining change over time

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Joanna Philippoff Co-INVESTIGATORS: Heather Spalding, Craig Nelson Graduate Trainee: Florybeth LaValle Although a culturally and ecologically important ecosystem, the intertidal is vulnerable to climate change, species invasions, overharvesting, and land-use practices. However, the intertidal zone of ...

Podcast #1: Fish Flow

Meet Dr. Brian Bowen and Michael Hoban and learn about their project tracking important aquaculture fish species from egg production to the reefs where they settle and grow. Read more about their project here ...

Podcast #3: Urban understandings and changing coasts

Meet Dr. Daniele Spirandelli and Theresa Dean and delve into the vulnerability of Hawaiʻi's wastewater infrastructure to a changing climate. Read more about their project here ...

Podcast #4: Is it freshwater or saltwater?

Meet Dr. Henrietta Dulai and Trista McKenzie and learn about their efforts to map submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) into Kāneʻohe Bay to measure the nutrient flow from groundwater compared with streams. Read more about their project here ...

Podcast #5: The two-to-three-day rule

Meet Dr. Craig Nelson and Krissy Remple and hear about their attempts to develop a new rapid, cost-effective tool to determine water quality where groundwater contamination might occur. Read more about their project here ...

Podcast #6: Filter feeders

Meet Dr. Brian Popp and Leilei Shih as they describe their project to evaluate the role of a recent invasive sponge population in Kāneʻohe Bay--for bad or good. Read more about their project here ...

Podcast #7: Hawaiian water

Meet Dr. Michael Roberts and Nathan DeMaagd and discover the intricacies of the economics of shifting water demands in the face of climate change. Read more about their project here ...

Predicting and mapping Hawaiian mesophotic coral ecosystems for sustainable coastal development

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Robert Toonen Graduate Trainee: Lindsay Veazey Although there is little question about the economic, ecological, cultural, and conservation value of coral reef habitats, growing population, tourism, and coastal development are rapidly degrading them. Our fundamental ...

Predicting Hawaiʻi water demand under climate change

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Michael Roberts Graduate Trainee: Nathan DeMaagd How will climate change affect supply and demand for water? The answer to this question is complex, uncertain and depends critically on location and context. On the supply side, ...

Rapid Response: Application of a qPCR-based test for Enterococci as a rapid beach management tool in Hawaiʻi

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Marek Kirs Graduate Trainee: Eduardo Guimares Climate change is projected to increase the risk of loss for people, assets, economies and ecosystems as extreme weather events, such as tropical storms and hurricanes, are projected to increase ...

Sea Urchin Disaster

In this episode, we look at the dramatic decline in the sea urchin population along Moorea's eastern reefs. Researcher Stella Swanson takes us out in the field as we look for evidence of what caused an entire species to be ...

Source tracking coastal groundwater and runoff contamination with microbial genomics and dissolved organic fluorometry

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Craig Nelson Graduate Trainee: Kristina Remple Contamination of Hawaiian coastal waters by human activities is widespread and threatens coastal ecosystems and water quality. The high density of cesspools in Hawai‘i is potentially a significant source of ...

Suspended Particles in the Ocean

In this episode, researcher Hillary Close takes us through the process of using chemical isotope analysis to uncover secrets of the ocean food web hidden in tiny, suspended particles. — Season 3, Episode 17.  30 second PROMO (Vimeo) Or watch this ...

Testing Freshwater

In this episode, we’re working with Hawai'i Sea Grant researchers and graduate students to examine the water quality of freshwater as it heads to the ocean. Freshwater travels in streams and underground, picking up pollution from our cesspools and agricultural ...

The role of sponges in nitrogen cycling in Kāneʻohe Bay, Oʻahu

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Brian Popp Graduate Trainee: Joy Shih Coastal ecosystems are regions of remarkable biological productivity and diversity, yet they are among our most disturbed natural environments. Although many human activities cause change in the coastal zone, ...

The use of a euryhaline Tilapia to assess the endocrine disrupting effects of anthropogenic chemicals on growth and osmoregulation of a tropical teleost species inhabiting coastal waters and wetlands in Hawaiʻi and the tropics

 Research Projects 2016-2018 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Andre Seale Many agricultural and industrial chemicals have demonstrated the capacity to disrupt the physiology of wildlife by impacting the endocrine system. These man-made substances, termed endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), cause immediate physiological effects or ...

West Maui wave run-up forecasts

 Research Projects 2018-2020 PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Douglas Luther Co-INVESTIGATOR: Mark Merrifield Graduate Student: Camilla Tognacchini The long-term rising trend in sea level (typically, an inch or so every 10 years around Hawaiʻi) alone will not be obvious to the casual observer at ...