April 10, 2020 / Volume 8, Issue 14
The Water Resource Research Center - a research unit of the  College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and an Extension unit in  UA Cooperative Extension  within the Division of   Agriculture,  Life & Veterinary Sciences & Cooperative Extension
WRRC Office Update

Although the WRRC building will be closed to the public until further notice, our staff continue to work and engage as much as possible. You can reach us via email as listed on our Directory. We wish you all the best - Stay safe and healthy!

UArizona Cooperative Extension COVID-19 info page   
In this issue:  Appreciation Week  / Coronavirus / APW / ADWR Data / Pets
Climate, Public Health, and Infectious Disease in the Sonoran Desert
Terms such as "flattening the curve," "disease vectors," and other discussions of epidemiology have become commonplace as COVID-19 has spread throughout our communities. As society is developing a renewed interest and appreciation for public health, Kacey Ernst, Associate Professor and Program Director of Epidemiology at the UArizona College of Public Health, gave a timely presentation on her work on infectious disease for a WRRC Brown Bag Webinar on Wednesday, April 8. Ernst's presentation, entitled "Human-environment dynamics in the Sonoran Desert and Ae. aegypti, the vector of dengue, Zika, and chikungunya," detailed her research on the interplay between anthropogenic and environmental factors driving the abundance of Ae. aegypti mosquitos in our desert urban landscapes. Of particular interest, Ernst described research that uses regional temperature, humidity, and precipitation data to predict local Ae. aegypti abundance and estimate how these conditions affect disease transmission. In the future, these models can be incorporated into early warning systems that promotes public awareness and action with location-specific alerts such as "Only two days left before mosquitos in your area will hatch. Take action now to eliminate standing water." 

View the entire presentation here.
Brown Bag Webinar Only - Student Research on Water Resource Science Monitoring and Methods

April 16, 2020 / 12:00pm to 1:15pm

  • Nat Bransky, MS Student, Environmental Sciences and Policy Program, Northern Arizona University
  • Sean Schrag-Toso, MS Student, Hydrology and Atmospheric Science and Water Policy Certificate Program, University of Arizona
  • Christopher Yazzie, PhD Student, Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Arizona 

  • Monitoring Tamarix Defoliation and Mortality from D. carinulata Attacks Using Satellite Imagery in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, USA 
  • Isotopes, Geochemistry, Citizen Science, and Local Partnerships as Tools to Build Upon a Fractured Understanding of the Hydrology of the Patagonia Mountains
  • Solar Nanofiltration for Off-grid Water Purification in Navajo Nation

Upcoming Brown Bag Webinars

April 29 - Marie Pearthree, Mike McGuire, Tucson Water Turnaround: Crisis to Success


Guest Authors: Juliet McKenna, P.G., Principal Hydrogeologist, Montgomery & Associates; Arturo Gabaldon, President, Community Water Company of Green Valley; Rosanna Gabaldón, AZ State Representative, Legislative District 2; Bob Hollander, Environmental Resources Manager, Water Services Department, City of Peoria; Crystal Thompson, Communications Manager, Central Arizona Project; and Sheri Trapp, Communications Specialist, AMWUA

Arizona residents certainly know the value of water. Professionals in the water industry understand that protecting and managing Arizona's water supplies are essential to the state's future, which requires an educated and well-trained workforce. The thousands of professionals in the water industry include engineers, hydrologists, hydrogeologists, water and wastewater operators, biologists, and experts on policy, economics, business administration, law, and communications. These water professionals are on the front lines, providing and ensuring safe and reliable water for Arizona. For the second year, Arizonans will honor the work and dedication of professionals in the water industry during Arizona Water Professionals Appreciation Week, officially designated by the Arizona House of Representatives as April 12 - 19, 2020.

Read the full article here
coronavirusUniversity of Arizona Researchers Monitor Coronavirus in Municipal Wastewater Throughout the U.S.
As the spread of the new coronavirus continues, researchers at the University of Arizona Water and Energy Sustainable Technology (WEST) Center are using municipal wastewater to monitor the incidence of the virus in communities across the United States. An earlier study conducted in 2008 by WEST Center researchers measured the survival of coronaviruses in wastewater, and found that coronaviruses die off very rapidly in wastewater, with a 99.9% reduction in two to three days. WEST Center researchers will bring this expertise to the new study, which will use molecular methods recommended by the CDC to detect SARS-CoV-2 genetic markers in sewage samples collected prior to and following wastewater treatment. Such sewage monitoring programs can result in valuable data to determine if the virus is present in a community, even if individuals are asymptomatic, and can also ensure the effectiveness of a municipality's wastewater treatment process.
apwBringing the Arizona Water Festival to You!

Quarantine and social distancing won't stop Arizona Project WET from bringing our programs directly to students and teachers! With events being canceled and classes going online, our team is currently developing components of the Arizona Water Festival (AWF) event-day lessons so that today's fourth graders don't miss out. These include videos of facilitated lesson components covering each AWF field day station: Watersheds and Watershed Management, Water Conservation Technology, the Groundwater System, and the Water Cycle. Our Educators will facilitate students' learning using models and inquiry, translating what we do in the field to the web! Teachers will be given an assessment tool for each of the content areas so they can track their students' learning. All AWF components will go live on our YouTube channel on April 20! Please stay tuned by following our Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for updates.

adwrImproved Access to ADWR Data Now Online

Since 2008, The Arizona Department of Water Resources (ADWR) has been working on a tool to make its data more accessible and understandable to the public. The agency recently announced that the tool has been implemented for some of the many data sets it has collected and compiled since 1980. An improved online interface makes access to data easier and visualization software has allowed ADWR to create graphic representations of some data sets. An outstanding example shows water supply and demand in the   Active Management Areas. Another example is a set of charts depicting water stored in groundwater recharge and savings facilities (scroll to the bottom of the page). The effort is ongoing, so look for more developments in the future.

petsWelcome to the launch of our new segment, Coworker of the Week, in which we highlight the pets that are interrupting Zoom meetings and/or sleeping at our feet as we work from home. This week's coworker shares a workspace with WRRC  Research Analyst  Ashley Hullinger. Meet Lucy: she's an orange tabby who enjoys purring, being aloof, and eating cat food. We applaud you, Lucy. Thanks for making Ashley's workplace simply purrfect.