The University of Arizona

Simone A. Williams | CLIMAS

Fellow, Climate Assessment for the Southwest

2021 recipient of the Climate Assessment for the Southwest (CLIMAS) Environment & Society Graduate Fellows Program.

Simone A. Williams is a 1st year graduate student in the Arid Lands Resources Sciences PhD Program. She has a background in natural resources management and sustainable development planning. Her general research interest is international water governance. Currently, the main focus of her research is examining risk and vulnerability assessments and enhancing climate change adaptation outcomes in karst groundwater aquifers in islands and arid regions.

Project Title: Examining Karst Groundwater Scarcity and Vulnerability in Coconino Plateau, AZ

As a 2021 Environment and Society Fellow, Simone will collaborate with the Coconino Plateau Watershed Advisory Council and Coconino Plateau Watershed Partnership to conduct exploratory research to characterize karst groundwater security issues (quantity, quality and access) in a critical geographic area. She will produce a series of thematic resource maps, a searchable geodatabase and a story map of regional karst groundwater vulnerability in Arizona. Her work will build local water stakeholders’ adaptation capacity by providing data and information products and tools to enhance advocacy, public awareness and understanding of karst groundwater scarcity and vulnerability in the Coconino Plateau region. The research will also provide multiple opportunities for cross learning between karst aquifers in arid regions and island states. In particular, this work will inform design of her dissertation research which targets assessment of the specific and intrinsic vulnerability and risks of arid regions and island karst aquifers to pollution and climate change.