Sonoran Institute

Phoenix, AZ, United States

Sonoran Institute

Phoenix, AZ, United States

Time filter

Source Type

News Article | May 2, 2017
Site: www.prnewswire.com

"It's been said that water is the new oil, and if we want to ensure that future generations have adequate supplies, we have to understand the intimate connection between land and water," said George W. "Mac" McCarthy, president and CEO of the Lincoln Institute. "It's a two-way street: how we plan and use land has an impact on water, and water availability has an increasing impact on how we can use land. We seek to bridge these two worlds to better meet the needs of people, agriculture, and nature." The Babbitt Center will gather data, develop indicators, and build and test new tools for fair, efficient, and sustainable management of water resources. An initial activity will be to develop a map, using satellite imagery, for selected tributaries of the Colorado River Basin. The aim is to provide a foundation – potentially scaled up to the entire basin, serving seven states and some 30 million people – that illustrates the relationship between land and water, and can be used for better projections, modeling, and scenario planning. "We hope that conversations with communities and decision-makers throughout the basin might bring together stakeholders who don't necessarily talk to each other," said McCarthy. "We seek to help state and local officials integrate land and water policies across an entire geography, to imagine better futures." At the same time the Babbitt Center is launched, the longstanding joint program between the Lincoln Institute and the Sonoran Institute, previously known as Western Lands and Communities and now renamed Resilient Communities and Watersheds, will aim to better integrate land use planning and water management at the local level. The partnership with the Sonoran Institute will be an important part of the work of the Center. Ultimately, it is hoped that the Babbitt Center will become a hub that connects the people and practices of the arid American West to people and practices in the rest of the world.  By 2025, the United Nations predicts that 1.8 billion people – nearly one-quarter of the planet's population by that time – will be living in regions with severe water scarcity. The Center will become part of the emerging global footprint of the Lincoln Institute, from Beijing, where long aqueducts are planned as the sprawling city confronts rapidly draining aquifers, to the megacities of Latin America, which struggle to provide water to citizens through cycles of drought and floods. "I am honored to be associated with this initiative and vision," said Bruce Babbitt, who is currently advising state government in California on water issues. "The Lincoln Institute has emphasized the importance of land and land policy in addressing the world's toughest problems, and the stewardship of water resources is at the top of the list. We all need to be aware of the connection between water and land." "We are optimistic as we all share the goal of ensuring water for future generations," said Holway, formerly director of the Lincoln Institute-Sonoran Institute joint program and assistant director of the Arizona Department of Water Resources, who currently serves on the board of the Central Arizona Project. The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy is an independent, nonpartisan organization whose mission is to help solve global economic, social, and environmental challenges to improve the quality of life through creative approaches to the use, taxation, and stewardship of land. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/lincoln-institute-launches-babbitt-center-for-land-and-water-policy-300449707.html


News Article | February 22, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

TUCSON, AZ--(Marketwired - February 22, 2017) - The Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block is pleased to announce the launch of a naming opportunity initiative with its first major gift in the program, $500,000 to name a new feature exhibition gallery the James J. and Louise R. Glasser Gallery. The announcement also signals the beginning of the largest renovation of the Museum campus since 2000 in conjunction with a reinstallation of the Museum's exhibits. The renovation is scheduled to take place through the summer of 2017 and will include the Main Building, the John K. Goodman Pavilion, and the Moore Courtyard. A celebration of the renovation and reinstallation will be held in mid-October. "The Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block is reinventing the way it looks as a nearly century-old organization," said TMA CEO Jeremy Mikolajczak. "As we embark on this new venture, it is through the vision and support of Jim and Louise Glasser that we can advance our mission and access, and enhance the visitor experience. This gift will allow us to completely transform the way we install and present feature exhibitions." The Glassers have a long history of philanthropy in Tucson and their native Chicago where they have been actively involved in the Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson Symphony Orchestra, University of Arizona, Sonoran Institute, Women's Foundation of Southern Arizona, Community Foundation for Southern Arizona, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, The Art Institute of Chicago, The University of Chicago, Lake Forest Hospital, and Chicago Botanic Garden. "The arts have been significant to our family, and a shared passion for Louise and me," said James Glasser. "We believe art is education and inspiration. In making this gift, it is our desire to help expand the wonderful experiences the Museum provides as a cultural asset to our community." This is the Glasser's second major gift to TMA. They endowed the curator position for the Art of the American West collection in 2011. James Glasser has served on the Museum's Board of Trustee's since 2006. "As friends of the museum, Louise and I have seen thousands of children and adults engage with art and each other," Mr. Glasser said. "It makes us happy to be able to express our commitment to the Museum and help expand upon the role it plays in our community." The naming opportunity is one of several available in an effort to raise funds for renovation of the entire TMA campus, and to build an endowment for the Museum, Mikolajczak said. Opportunities are available from $100,000 to name galleries and other facilities such as the Museum Store. "Our Museum impacts more than 125,000 people each year through admissions, education programs, outreach and community events," Mikolajczak said. "TMA is a historic and integral part of the fabric of Tucson and we want to ensure its long-term sustainability." The Museum will remain open during the summer renovation and reinstallation of the exhibits, offering extended programs focusing on the historic properties around the campus at 140 N. Main Ave. The Museum will offer free admission from July 9 through October 20. The John K. Goodman Pavilion will reopen in September in coordination with Museum's popular admission - free program - Second SundAZe @ TMA: Presented by The Stonewall Foundation. In addition to this summer's renovation, the long-term renovation plan includes relocation of the Museum Store, expanding collection galleries, expanding TMALearn's "Creative Space," an interactive family education center, reopening of the Museum's Main Avenue entrance, and new access between the Main Museum Building and the Goodman Pavilion. The Museum is located at 140 N. Main Avenue in historic downtown Tucson at the crossroads of West Alameda Street and North Main Avenue. Parking is free in the Museum's lot on West Washington Street. Free First Thursday: Play! Happy Hours @ TMA: 5:00 - 8:00 p.m. Free admission for all, make, drink, and explore. Second SundAZe @ TMA: 12:00 - 5:00 p.m. Free admission for Arizona and Sonora, Mexico residents every second Sunday of the month, including Picture This! Art for Families activities: 1:00 - 3:00 p.m., music and photo booth. Fun for all ages. Adults, $12; Senior (65+), $10; Student (with college ID), $7; Youth (13-17), $7; Child (12 and under), free; Veteran with ID, free; Museum Member, Free. About the Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block The Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block's mission is Connecting Art to Life. The Museum was founded 1924 in the El Presidio Historic District of downtown Tucson. It is Southern Arizona's premier presenter of fine art and art education programs. The Museum features permanent and traveling exhibitions of Modern and Contemporary, Native American, American West, Latin American, and Asian art. The 74,000 square foot Museum offers guided tours, education programs, and studio art classes in a contemporary building. The Museum's Historic Block of 19th and 20th C. adobe and Mission Revival-style buildings, encompassing an entire four-acre city block, includes the John K. Goodman Pavilion of Western Art, displaying the Museum's notable art of the American West collection, the highly acclaimed Museum restaurant Café a la C'Art, and additional exhibition and studio spaces. For more information, please visit www.TucsonMuseumofArt.org or call (520) 624-2333. Follow the latest events on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. TMA is a private 501(c)(3) charitable arts and education organization.


Nadeau J.B.,University of Arizona | Megdal S.B.,University of Arizona | Rupprecht C.,University of Arizona | Choate B.,Sonoran Institute | And 2 more authors.
Journal - American Water Works Association | Year: 2012

A joint City of Tucson & Pima County Water Study has supported innovative mechanism called Conserve to Enhance (C2E) program by the University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center (WRRC), establishing a set of shared policy goals. The study recommended using the C2E program as a funding source to acquire water supplies for the environment. The Tucson C2E Program required implementing water conservation methods, tracking the money they save on their water bills, and donating savings to a fund for local riparian enhancement. In Tucson, the C2E pilot has taken a major step toward securing water to benefit the local environment. Implementing a pilot program that connects municipal water savings to local enhancement projects required overcoming several locally specific obstacles and securing the help of key partners.


Nelson S.M.,Apt Therapeutics, Inc. | Zamora-Arroyo F.,Sonoran Institute | Ramirez-Hernandez J.,Autonomous University of Baja California | Santiago-Serrano E.,Sonoran Institute
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2013

An obstructive tidal sandbar forms in the estuary of the Colorado River, Mexico, during periods of low fluvial discharge. The sandbar typically develops at a bedload convergence zone centered approximately 30. km landward from Montague Island near the river's mouth. The estuary provides important spawning habitat for the endangered totoaba (Totoaba macdonaldi) and commercially exploited Gulf corvina (Cynoscion othonopterus), as well as habitat for larval shrimp, all of which are impacted by reduced freshwater/sea water mixing when the sandbar is present.Sequential satellite images, aerial photographs, overflights, and ground observations were used to document the geomorphology of the tidal sandbar and its formation, removal, and subsequent reappearance in response to long-term variations in fluvial flow following completion of Glen Canyon Dam in 1964. Evidence for the formation of the sandbar during low-discharge periods prior to anthropogenic manipulation of the river's flow was also examined.Water data sensors were installed upstream from the current sandbar to monitor the frequency of tidal overflow and document the effect of tides on salinity. Topographic surveys of the sandbar were completed both before and after the 2010 Mw 7.2 El Mayor-Cucapah Earthquake which caused subsidence of lands immediately east of the sandbar's crest.Utilizing topographic data and knowledge of the sandbar's geomorphologic and sedimentary history, we designed and installed a system of dredged pilot channels to improve connectivity between the upper and lower estuary by facilitating tidal and fluvial flow across the barrier. The effectiveness of the pilot channels is currently under evaluation. If the pilot channels fail to establish the desired level of connectivity, installation and maintenance of a more substantial dredged channel may be necessary to meet restoration objectives. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Glenn E.P.,University of Arizona | Mexicano L.,University of Arizona | Garcia-Hernandez J.,Research Center En Alimentacion sarrollo Ac | Nagler P.L.,U.S. Geological Survey | And 5 more authors.
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2013

Evapotranspiration (ET) and other water balance components were estimated for Cienega de Santa Clara, an anthropogenic brackish wetland in the delta of the Colorado River in Mexico. The marsh is in the Biosphere Reserve of the Upper Gulf of California and Delta of the Colorado River, and supports a high abundance and diversity of wildlife. Over 95% of its water supply originates as agricultural drain water from the USA, sent for disposal in Mexico. This study was conducted from 2009 to 2011, before, during and after a trial run of the Yuma Desalting Plant in the USA, which will divert water from the wetland and replace it with brine from the desalting operation. The goal was to estimate the main components in the water budget to be used in creating management scenarios for this marsh. We used a remote sensing algorithm to estimate ET from meteorological data and Enhanced Vegetation Index values from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) sensors on the Terra satellite. ET estimates from the MODIS method were then compared to results from a mass balance of water and salt inflows and outflows over the study period. By both methods, mean annual ET estimates ranged from 2.6 to 3.0mmd-1, or 50 to 60% of reference ET (ETo). Water entered at a mean salinity of 2.6gL-1 TDS and mean salinity in the wetland was 3.73gL-1 TDS over the 33 month study period. Over an annual cycle, 54% of inflows supported ET while the rest exited the marsh as outflows; however, in winter when ET was low, up to 90% of the inflows exited the marsh. An analysis of ET estimates over the years 2000-2011 showed that annual ET was proportional to the volume of inflows, but was also markedly stimulated by fires. Spring fires in 2006 and 2011 burned off accumulated thatch, resulting in vigorous growth of new leaves and a 30% increase in peak summer ET compared to non-fire years. Following fires, peak summer ET estimates were equal to ETo, while in non-fire years peak ET was equal to only one-half to two-thirds of ETo. Over annual cycles, estimated ET was always lower than ETo, because T. domingensis is dormant in winter and shades the water surface, reducing direct evaporation. Thus, ET of a Typha marsh is likely to be less than an open water surface under most conditions. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


Garcia-Hernandez J.,Research Center En Alimentacion sarrollo Ac Ciad Guaymas | Flessa K.,University of Arizona | Santiago-Serrano E.,Sonoran Institute | Romero-Hernandez S.,Autonomous University of Baja California | And 2 more authors.
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2013

Salinity has affected the Colorado River for more than five decades: agriculture, mining and urban sprawl have exacerbated the problem, with the most severe impacts occurring in its southern basin and Mexico. However, moderate salinities (2.6gL-1 Total Dissolved Solids) and constant average flows (4m3s-1) from a U.S. agriculture drain, have allowed the establishment of a 6500ha cattail (Typha domingensis) dominated wetland in the mudflats of the upper Gulf of California in Mexico, called " Cienega de Santa Clara" (Cienega). This wetland could now be threatened due to the operation of the Yuma Desalting Plant (YDP). Operations will result in reduced flows and salinity increases in the canal that feeds the wetland. From 2006 to 2011 we monitored water quality conditions at the Cienega as part of a binational effort. Monthly monitoring of field parameters was made at the inflows and at 28 stations inside the wetland. In 2010, 4 automatic loggers were installed inside the wetland to take half an hour readings of temperature and salinity. At the center of the Cienega from 70 to 80% of salinity variations depended on salinity from the main inflow; this response was observed with both monthly data and daily data, indicating a rapid response from salinity inflows. The YDP demonstration run at 10% capacity caused a mean salinity increase from 3.0 to 3.3gL-1 TDS at the center of the wetland and from 3.8 to 5.2gL-1 TDS salinity increase at the periphery. During the YDP pilot run at one-third capacity, mean salinity increased from 3.2 to 4.3gL-1 TDS at the center of the wetland and from 4.3 to 8.3gL-1 TDS at the periphery. There was no evidence of upper Gulf of California tidal intrusion into the wetland. Salinity concentrations at the main inflow should not exceed 3.0gL-1 TDS in order to prevent a reduction in cattail growth inside the wetland. Nevertheless, our recommendation is to maintain salinities at 2.6±0.2gL-1 TDS at the main inflow, in order to preserve vigorous cattail stands. Operation of the YDP plant at 10%, one-third, two-thirds and full capacity without replacement water, will have negative effects on the vegetation. Future efforts should be oriented to compensate for possible salinity increases. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Garcia-Hernandez J.,Research Center En Alimentacion sarrollo Ac Ciad Guaymas | Flessa K.,University of Arizona | Santiago-Serrano E.,Sonoran Institute | Romero-Hernandez S.,Autonomous University of Baja California | And 2 more authors.
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2013

Salinity has affected the Colorado River for more than five decades: agriculture, mining and urban sprawl have exacerbated the problem, with the most severe impacts occurring in its southern basin and Mexico. However, moderate salinities (2.6gL-1 Total Dissolved Solids) and constant average flows (4m3s-1) from a U.S. agriculture drain, have allowed the establishment of a 6500ha cattail (Typha domingensis) dominated wetland in the mudflats of the upper Gulf of California in Mexico, called "Cienega de Santa Clara" (Cienega). This wetland could now be threatened due to the operation of the Yuma Desalting Plant (YDP). Operations will result in reduced flows and salinity increases in the canal that feeds the wetland. From 2006 to 2011 we monitored water quality conditions at the Cienega as part of a binational effort. Monthly monitoring of field parameters was made at the inflows and at 28 stations inside the wetland. In 2010, 4 automatic loggers were installed inside the wetland to take half an hour readings of temperature and salinity. At the center of the Cienega from 70 to 80% of salinity variations depended on salinity from the main inflow; this response was observed with both monthly data and daily data, indicating a rapid response from salinity inflows. The YDP demonstration run at 10% capacity caused a mean salinity increase from 3.0 to 3.3gL-1 TDS at the center of the wetland and from 3.8 to 5.2gL-1 TDS salinity increase at the periphery. During the YDP pilot run at one-third capacity, mean salinity increased from 3.2 to 4.3gL-1 TDS at the center of the wetland and from 4.3 to 8.3gL-1 TDS at the periphery. There was no evidence of upper Gulf of California tidal intrusion into the wetland. Salinity concentrations at the main inflow should not exceed 3.0gL-1 TDS in order to prevent a reduction in cattail growth inside the wetland. Nevertheless, our recommendation is to maintain salinities at 2.6±0.2gL-1 TDS at the main inflow, in order to preserve vigorous cattail stands. Operation of the YDP plant at 10%, one-third, two-thirds and full capacity without replacement water, will have negative effects on the vegetation. Future efforts should be oriented to compensate for possible salinity increases. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Ramirez-Hernandez J.,Autonomous University of Baja California | Rodriguez-Burgueno J.E.,Autonomous University of Baja California | Zamora-Arroyo F.,Sonoran Institute | Carreon-Diazconti C.,Autonomous University of Baja California | Perez-Gonzalez D.,Autonomous University of Baja California
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2015

River regulation in semiarid lands often results in a dry riverbed, which conducts to serious ecological degradation. Given the numerous hydraulic control structures, in the U.S. area, and the water diversions for consumptive uses, in Mexican territory, nowadays the Colorado River Delta region shows runoff only during wetting years when surplus water is available. Due to concerns related to the ecological health of this Delta, an international agreement (Minute 319) was signed between Mexico and the U.S. in November 2012. This agreement contemplates, among other issues, the release of water for environmental restoration purposes in the Colorado River Delta riparian corridor. The purpose of this study is to propose feasible discharge flows, timing, and extension of flooded areas for riparian restoration. This is accomplished through the analysis of sediments texture, soil salinity, and groundwater levels, which were conducted in conjunction with diverse base and pulse flow modeling scenarios in a 10-mile reach of the Colorado River. Infiltration from irrigation channels, irrigation returns, and river discharge flows was recognized and the depth to water table and its influence on riparian vegetation was analyzed. Under a pulse flow of 200m3s-1, the resulting flood will cover 65% of the entire study area, similarly to the inundation observed in 1997, the year of the last natural flood. Modeling results further suggest that, the mainstream of the river will be flooded by mimic base flows of 10m3s-1. In addition, the timing and elapsed time of discharges that mimic base and pulse flows could play an important role to maintain shallow groundwater levels and to promote native riparian vegetation establishment. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.


Mexicano L.,University of Arizona | Nagler P.L.,U.S. Geological Survey | Zamora-Arrroyo F.,Sonoran Institute | Zamora-Arrroyo F.,University of Arizona | Glenn E.P.,University of Arizona
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2013

The Cienega de Santa Clara is a 5600. ha, anthropogenic wetland in the delta of the Colorado River in Mexico. It is the inadvertent creation of the disposal of brackish agricultural waste water from the U.S. into the intertidal zone of the river delta in Mexico, but has become an internationally important wetland for resident and migratory water birds. We used high resolution Quickbird and WorldView-2 images to produce seasonal vegetation maps of the Cienega before, during and after a test run of the Yuma Desalting Plant, which will remove water from the inflow stream and replace it with brine. We also used moderate resolution, 16-day composite NDVI imagery from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) sensors on the Terra satellite to determine the main factors controlling green vegetation density over the years 2000-2011. The marsh is dominated by Typha domingensis Pers. with Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. Ex Steud. as a sub-dominant species in shallower marsh areas. The most important factor controlling vegetation density was fire. Spring fires in 2006 and 2011 were followed by much more rapid green-up of T. domingensis in late spring and 30% higher peak summer NDVI values compared to non-fire years (P<. 0.001). Fires removed thatch and returned nutrients to the water, resulting in more vigorous vegetation growth compared to non-fire years. The second significant (P<. 0.01) factor controlling NDVI was flow rate of agricultural drain water from the U.S. into the marsh. Reduced summer flows in 2001 due to canal repairs, and in 2010 during the YDP test run, produced the two lowest NDVI values of the time series from 2000 to 2011 (P<. 0.05). Salinity is a further determinant of vegetation dynamics as determined by greenhouse experiments, but was nearly constant over the period 2000-2011, so it was not a significant variable in regression analyses. It is concluded that any reduction in inflow volumes will result in a linear decrease in green foliage density in the marsh. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


Nelson S.M.,6101 NE 102nd Avenue Apt 5 | Fielding E.J.,Jet Propulsion Laboratory | Zamora-Arroyo F.,Sonoran Institute | Flessa K.,University of Arizona
Ecological Engineering | Year: 2013

The intertidal portion of Mexico's Colorado River Delta is a dynamic environment subject to complex interactions of tectonic, fluvial, and tidal forces at the head of the Gulf of California. We review the historical interactions of these forces, use sequential satellite images, overflights, ground observations, and interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) data to study the effects of the 2010 Mw 7.2 El Mayor-Cucapah Earthquake on changing patterns of tidal inundation within the Delta, and assess effects of these changes to the fluvial/hydrological regime of the Colorado River estuary and nearby Ciénega de Santa Clara wetland. The objectives of this study are to highlight for environmental scientists, land managers, and ecological engineers the contribution of tectonic forces in shaping the intertidal Delta environment and to provide information on the effects of the 2010 earthquake which will be of practical value in planning and designing management measures and restoration projects for the estuary and Ciénega.The Colorado River estuary is at present blocked by a tidal sand bar which restricts access by marine species to the upper estuary and obstructs the flow of fresh water into the lower estuary. Located 13. km east of the estuary, the Ciénega is a 6000. ha wetland supported by agricultural drain water from Arizona and Mexico. South of the Ciénega is the Santa Clara Slough, an unvegetated 26,000. ha basin subject to periodic inundation from the northern Gulf's high amplitude tides, which have historically reached the margins of the Ciénega several times each year.The El Mayor-Cucapah earthquake ruptured the previously unknown Indiviso Fault which extends into the intertidal zone just west of the Ciénega. The Ciénega experienced only minor surface deformation having no direct effects to the wetland. Most of the significant ground movement and surface deformation occurred west of the Indiviso Fault adjacent to the estuary, where portions of the intertidal flats underwent extensive liquefaction, northward coseismic displacement and post-seismic subsidence. These surface deformations changed the pattern of tidal inundation, triggering development of a new system of natural tidal channels and creating conditions favorable for installation of projects to restore connectivity between the upper and lower estuary. The changed pattern of tidal inundation may also have contributed to an observed reduction in the occurrence of tidal flooding along the southwestern margin of the Ciénega following the earthquake. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Loading Sonoran Institute collaborators
Loading Sonoran Institute collaborators