Latest REO Agenda

REO Agenda 2021

WERI's Mandates

Water Resources Research Act of 1964
The National Institutes for Water Resources Research are explicitly charged to 1) arrange for competent research that addresses water problems or expands understanding of water and water-related phenomena, 2) aid the entry of new research scientists into the water resources fields, 3) help train future water scientists and engineers, and 4) get results of sponsored research to water managers and the public.

Pacific ENSO Application Center
As Guam Partner in the Pacific ENSO (El Nino/Southern Oscillation) Application Center, WERI provides: 1) information on the effects of ENSO to regional water resources and disaster managers 2) outreach and educational activities 3) long-range forecasts of rainfall, typhoons, and sea levels, and 4) monthly coordination with NCEP (National Center for Environmental Prediction) on climate hazards.

Public Law 24-161, 1998
Drought Management and Comprehensive Water Conservation Plan, requires that WERI: 1) conduct and administer a Comprehensive Monitoring Program to collect data and prepare reports on saltwater intrusion, water lens thickness in the northern part of Guam, stream flow data in the southern part of Guam, and related matters and 2) said program shall be administered in conjunction with the United States Geological Survey

Public Law 24-247, 1998
The Guam Hydrological Survey mandate, requires that WERI: 1) locate, inventory and evaluate all hydrologic data pertaining to Guam and consolidate the data into a single computer-based data library from which information can be easily accessed and retrieved; 2) establish a direct working relationship with each organization collecting hydrologic data important to Guam, and maintain a permanent flow of new data from each organization to keep the data library up to date; and 3) conduct analyses to assess the status of Guam’s water resources, and publish annual and other regular concise reports on water use, trends and key concerns for use by the governor, legislature, public agencies and private businesses, and citizens of Guam.

WERI Mission
Trustworthy and timely scientific research, instruction, and advice to support sustainable development and effective management of the freshwater resources of Micronesia. 

Research, Training, Education and Outreach Programs

1. Start from mission and mandates
2. Consider community advice and needs
3. Consider how best to leverage resources with internal collaboration
4. Teamwork rather than internal competition
5. Stay within bounds of the doable

Proposed New Items for 2021
1. Online Aquifer Tour
2. April Island Water Resources Online Conference (led by UH WRRI)
3. Water Kids Online
4. WERI Professional Workshops
5. WERI Scientific Advisory Papers

Guam Activities

I. Northern Guam Aquifer Research

Baseline/Core Products
Maps and Databases
NGLA Database (Habana) (since 2014, permanent ongoing)
Restore Coastal Aerial Imagery of northern Guam (Taboroŝi/Jenson) Done
Northern Guam Map Series
Aquifer map (Habana)
since 2014, permanent ongoing, 5-yr update
Surface Hydrology of NGLA (Habana/Heitz) June 2021 (Ph1: June)
Nitrate map (Habana/Bulaklak)
CWMP data collection program (Habana/USGS-PIWSC) (since 1998, permanent ongoing)
CWMP-MSERP data collection and monitor-well expansion (Jenson/Bordallo) [GWA]
One-Guam Aquifer Monitoring Program (OGAMP) (Jenson/Hoffman) [GWA, USGS]
WERI/GHS State of the Aquifer Report: (Jenson/Bautista + all PIs)
WERI Scientific Advisory Papers (Launch series?)
Water quantity/availability
Groundwater modeling: sustainable yields (Habana/Superales) (since 2015) Publish paper in journal: Target date Jun manuscript
Groundwater modeling: GMS implementation (Habana/Aguilo) Yigo-Tumon Basin model (since 2019, underway…)
NGLA freshwater lens thickness (Habana/Dougher) (since 2015) BYU? Kaylyn?
2016-2017 GWA production-well rehabilitation assessment: Lessons Learned/Manual for Well Exploration and Development on Guam (Kim, Habana, Jenson) (Since 2019, ongoing…?)
Exploration of coastal discharge by remote sensing (King-Jenson/Walker-Villareal) (Since 2018 ) Ongoing, complete by summer 2021, TRs by Oct, manuscripts by Jan 2022
Water quality
Patterns and trends of salinity Yigo-Tumon Basin, NGLA (Wen/Lander) NEW DIRECTION
Pending proposal on PFAS w/ GWA (Kim)
II. Southern Guam Watersheds Research

Baseline/Core Products
Maps and Databases
Southern Watershed Map Series
Restore Coastal Aerial Imagery of southern Guam (Taboroŝi) Done.
General watershed map from aerial imagery (Habana-Heitz) TRs 169, 171
Water quantity/availability
Santa Rita Spring rehabilitation (Jenson-Habana-Lander/Bourke)
Done. TR 172
Quantifying ungauged streamflow (Heitz)
Done TR 154
Water quality
Toguan River hydrology and quality (Khosrowpanah)
Done. Papers published
III. Guam Water Resource Management

Baseline/Core Products
Guam Water-Use Database: Water-use data compilation and research (Kim/GHS Team) [Fund student RA to undertake date collection, archiving; possible thesis topic] Ongoing. Current team?
IV. Guam Training, Education and Outreach Activities

Baseline/Core Products
GHS-CWMP Website (Habana) Permanent ongoing
WERI Scientific Advisory Papers (Annual GHS Trend Reporting) (Habana and GHS Team: Kim, Wen, Bautista + students)
Rainfall and recharge (Lander, Habana, Jenson)
Aquifer salinity (Habana, Kim, Wen, Jenson) [Superales TR, Aguilo in TR]
Nitrate Occurrence and Trends (Habana, Bulaklak, Jenson, )
Annual Workshops & Presentations June or September Workshop(s)
Presentations to policy-makers: Legislature, CCU/GWA
WERI Professional Workshops: Database, Map, Website resources, Lessons-learned?…OGAMP workshop w/GWA?
Aquifer tours (Jenson, Habana, Kim, Bautista)
Develop online version with GLE?
Executive/professional tour: 2021—Legislature & One-Guam (with GWA management)
Educational: UOG students (Dr King’s class, EV511, SAME/Engineering students)
Outreach: Local school science teachers, with Water Kids (see below)
Regional Climate Workshop May Workshop (Lander, Jenson) new project
Water Kids (Bautista, GLE?) Develop online program
K-12 teacher workshops (including aquifer tour, above) (Bautista)
School presentations (Bautista)
April Island Water Resources Online Conference (led by UH WRRI): Sign up GLE to coord/facilitate; faculty, RAs submit abstracts for presentations.

FSM Activities

I. Wastewater management and treatment

Yap wastewater treatment improvement and training (Yeo)
Yap Water Quality Lab (Kim) NEW PROJECT?
Toful Watershed in Kosrae (Yeo, Lander, Jenson) NCE from 2020 (COVID=NO TRAVEL)
Pohnpei – Collaborate with Taborosi? Watershed study TBD
II. Education and outreach

Yap digital atlas (Yeo/Taboroŝi) Done?
New outreach education on water resources for K-12 (update previous work)

CNMI Activities

I. Baseline

  • Rainfall database (Lander)
  • Baseline for Saipan, Rota (Yeo/Pangelinan) NEW PROJECT

II. Water quality

  • Storm water and flooding (Yeo) New project
  • PFOS monitoring in Saipan production wells (Kim) 2020 continuing

III. Water Resource Management

  • Baseline/Core Products
    1. CNMI Water-Use Database: Water-use data compilation and research

Regional Research and Outreach Activities

  1. ENSO – PEAC (Lander)

    1. ENSO Newsletter
    2. Conference/workshop presentations

Basic Research (of interest to region and beyond)

  1. Karst Aquifer Evolution (Jenson, NSF collaboration with Gulley, USF)
    1. Water & air sampling in new and existing wells
    2. Dovetail with new well installation projects (MSERP)
  2. Guam/West Pacific Paleoclimate (Jenson, unfunded collaboration with UT-A, CalTech)
    1. Maintain Jinapsan Cave database (2008-2016 records), UT collaboration
    2. Speleothem analyses for Bomb Tritium and past 1500 years paleoclimate

Prospective opportunities or topics for new initiatives

  1. 104g proposal (with PIWSC) to leverage GHS for collaborative program
  2. Sea Grant proposal—application of NASA technologies (leverage coastal discharge project)
  3. PICSAC proposals—climate-related studies
  4. Collaboration with BYU Civil Engineering modeling team/AquaVeo

[1] Per director of USGS Pacific Islands Water Science Center, USGS may have $26k to fund preparation of a 4-page proposal, with up to $200k subsequently available to launch a permanent research program in water use for CNMI.