Cobre Valley Current Research
The Cobre Valley Water Research Initiative project focuses on co-producing solutions for complex water resources challenges in the Cobre Valley region of central Arizona. By bringing together community members, decision-makers, and natural resources managers, the UA Water Resources Research Center (WRRC) will assist in defining objectives and producing informational products to support decisions about how water is managed. In order to accomplish this task, more precise and updated information is needed about local water supply and demand in order to develop an accurate "water budget" for the Cobre Valley.
Our natural environment freely provides us with countless services. Recently there has been a push among researchers and natural resources managers to consider these services while generating water and land use plans. Before plans are drafted, it is helpful to understand exactly what values are important to your community by quantifying or assessing the services, value, and vulnerability or threat to those services, as well as mitigation to keep those services intact.
IMPACTS OF ECOSYSTEM SERVICES ON LONGTERM COMMUNITY HEALTH
Between 2019 and 2020, the University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center (UA WRRC) will complete an ecosystem services (ES) assessment of the Globe-Miami area. Focused on the Pinal Creek sub watershed (Cobre Valley), the assessment will be organized into different stages:
- Literature review to identify methods, case studies, trends, and ecosystem services of value to the region.
- Interviews with local and regional expert stakeholders and review results with a working group to evaluate the project’s approach.
- Demonstration of ES impacts on the region through qualitative (social value) and quantitative (calculated values) calculations displayed in a series of maps and results that will feed into future scenarios exploring the future in the Globe-Miami area.
Figure 1: Classifying ecosystem services into categories is one way of understanding which services are the most beneficial, vulnerable, or impacted in Cobre Valley.