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Project Details

Caribbean Coral Reef Institute (CCRI)

Project Status: This project began in April 2006 and is Ongoing

The Caribbean Coral Reef Institute (CCRI) is a partnership that supports research and monitoring activities to improve coral reef management strategies. The close collaboration in CCRI among scientists, managers, and Puerto Rico Department of Natural Resources, results in sound management strategies and policies that can be evaluated and implemented. NCCOS manages and administers NOAA's funding via a cooperative agreement with the University of Puerto Rico – Mayaguez (UPRM).

What CCRI Does

The CCRI is a cooperative program between UPRM and NOAA. The institute sponsors scientific research and monitoring programs that address short- and long-term management driven priorities to understand and manage the coral reef ecosystem of the US Caribbean. These activities address the major threats to coral reefs within an ecosystem context, including human socioeconomic dimensions, and enhance our understanding of the biological and physical processes that structure coral reefs and impact the health of the ecosystem. Through its sponsored programs and partnerships, CCRI aims to build research and management capacity to fully utilize the scientific expertise of the Greater Caribbean region in promoting both sustainable ecosystems and the services they provide.

The current research topics are:

  • Biological assessment of resources: long-term monitoring of Puerto Rico coral reefs.
  • Understanding of reef processes: coral settlement and post-settlement survivorship, cyanobacterial and algal epizoic growth on corals, and clonality in species of hermatypic corals.
  • Mesophotic coral reefs: characterization of mesophotic (deep) reefs, connectivity between shallow and mesophotic environments, and vulnerability to anthropogenic stressors in the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
  • Marine-protected area (MPA) design and implementation.
  • Impacts of water quality on coral reef health.
  • Dynamics of coral diseases and syndromes.

Regions of Study: Caribbean Sea, Puerto Rico

Primary Contact: David Hilmer

Research Theme: Science for Coastal Ecosystem Management 

Related NCCOS Center: CSCOR

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