University of Hawaii supported for more research in the Pacific islands

JIMAR research diver capturing 3D images of reef structures. (Photo credit: Ray Boland)
JIMAR research diver capturing 3D images of reef structures. (Photo credit: Ray Boland)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced on June 1 that the University of Hawaii has been chosen to host NOAA’s Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research (CIMAR).

The University of Hawaii has also been awarded up to $210 million by NOAA to be dispersed over a period of five years, with the potential for renewal after evaluation of the university’s performance.

The purpose of NOAA’s cooperative institute “is to conduct research and disseminate knowledge necessary for understanding and predicting environmental change in the Indo-Pacific region, for conserving and managing coastal and marine resources in the Hawaiian Islands and U.S.-affiliated Pacific Islands and for meeting the Nation’s economic, social, and environmental needs in these regions.”

Craig Mclean, the assistant NOAA administrator for Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, said “We are pleased to announce that the University of Hawaii will host our new Cooperative  Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research. This institute will help NOAA achieve our mission to better understand the ocean and atmosphere, which depends on research, data and information to make sound decisions for healthy ecosystems, communities and a strong blue economy.”

NOAA’S CIMAR is a newer offshoot of its previous cooperative institute, the Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research (JIMAR). CIMAR’s research will focus on themes similar to JIMAR’s. NOAA Research News stated that “the eight research themes include: ecological forecasting, ecosystem monitoring, ecosystem-based management, protection and restoration of resources, oceanographic monitoring and forecasting, climate science and impacts, air-sea interactions, and tsunamis and other long-period ocean waves.”

The director of JIMAR in the UH Mānoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, Doug Luther, said “Pacific island communities face daunting challenges and unique opportunities in achieving a sustainable and prosperous future as the environment and regional economies continue to change. NOAA‘s support is critical for attaining this future.”

Suzanna DeCosta

Climate & Gender Journalist
Pacific Environment Weekly

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