Unesco Green Citizens

Restore with Resilience

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Project begin: 01/09/2019

Researchers and residents of the island of Oʻahu in Hawaii are working together on an innovative project to enhance future reef resilience.

Leading organisation: University of Hawaii at Mānoa - Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology - Coral Resilience Lab
Covered Countries: United States of America
Theme: Ocean
Sub-themes: Coastal resource management, Ocean education, Participatory/citizen science, Protecting marine ecosystems
Tag: #Women #Youth
Selection: 2022
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Project needs
Communication strategy design
Digital communication
Graphic design
In search of financial partners
Logistical support
Monitoring and evaluation
Partnerships development
Press relations
Social Media
Sponsorship/ Philanthropy
Volunteer workforce
Web design

Coral reefs in Hawaii have experienced multiple large-scale bleaching events leading to reef degradation. Current climate projections have led to predictions that bleaching events will become more servere.

Involving communities and with the help of volunteers, the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology and the Coral Resilience Lab have launched one of the first coral restoration projects in the region.

An innovative research program

Restore with Resilience is an innovative research program. Researchers are exposing small fragments of each “coral of opportunity” (colonies already physically dislodged from the reef) to a thermal stress test in the lab. Then they selectively fragment and outplant the colonies that are more thermally tolerant so they have a better chance of surviving during the next bleaching event. Restore with Resilience team developed an experimental design to test in the field whether outplanting with resilient corals is an effective strategy to be scaled up worldwide.

Resilient corals have been outplanted onto local reefs and hundreds of community members have had the opportunity to participate in an active scientific research and resource management project.

Restore with Resilience hopes to expand these Restore with Resilience efforts from Oʻahu to Maui and Hawaii Island. The team also hopes to establish collaborative projects with researchers and resource managers across the Pacific.

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