TCBES Thesis Defense via Zoom - Devon Aguilar - Event Details
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TCBES Thesis Defense via Zoom - Devon Aguilar
TCBES Master's Thesis Defense via Zoom - Devon Aguilar
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, 9:00 AM
Location: Online Only
Zoom link: hawaii.zoom.us/j/591947647
Title: Detection and Impact of Sewage Pollution on South Kohala’s Coral Reefs
Abstract: Sewage pollution is one of many land-based stressors impacting coral reefs worldwide. On-site sewage disposal systems (OSDS) and wastewater injection wells are abundant in the Hawaiian Islands and have been associated with coastal water pollution. OSDS and wastewater injection wells are used throughout South Kohala, Hawaiʻi, and may be contributing the degradation of nearby reefs. Conducting benthic sampling and employing a multi-indicator approach, this study sought to determine the presence and impact of sewage on South Kohala’s reefs. Water motion and groundwater are likely diluting sewage found on South Kohala’s reefs. Tidal changes were also documented moving sewage polluted inshore waters over the reef. Results of benthic surveys identified turf algae as the dominant benthic cover, with calcification the lowest in sewage polluted regions. Sewage pollution may also be facilitating growth anomalies and algal overgrowth on South Kohala’s reefs. With natural processes facilitating the connectivity between land and sea, this study illustrates the need for improved sewage treatment and disposal within developed coastlines.
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