Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarships (QES) - $455,000
Collaborators: Dr. Lynda McCarthy and Dr. Andrew Laursen - Ryerson University, Dr. Lars Rehmann and Dr. Clare Robinson - Western University, Dr. Edgar Quiñones-Bolaños, University of Cartagena, Colombia, Dr. Geovanna Tafurt-Garcia, National University of Colombia, Colombia
Significance: The study will serve as an opportunity to train HQP and develop a collaborative partnership capable of delivering solutions to improve life conditions in the targeted region and to address future climate impacts.
Climate change poses significant challenges to the sustainability and development of the Colombian Caribbean Region (CCR) as it threatens to exacerbate floods, droughts, and coastal erosion, with significant disaster risks for major cities such as Cartagena and the archipelago of San Andrés, Providencia, and Santa Catalina. Over the next 50 years, the City of Cartagena could experience an increase in sea level of up to 25 cm, while San Andrés could lose 17% of its land territory.
The main goal of this project is to strengthen the coastal aquifer resilience and the groundwater use against climate change effects on the CCR. Although groundwater is a critical source of fresh drinking water in the CCR and other Low and Middle-Income Countries (LMIC), the knowledge about the effects of climate change on groundwater quantity and quality is limited.
To develop knowledge, a team of two Canadian Universities (Ryerson and Western) along with two Colombian universities (University of Cartagena and National University of Colombia – UNAL) will collaboratively develop novel computational tools, mathematical models, and knowledge to reduce uncertainties and improve numerical predictions on climate change, salinity intrusion, groundwater contamination, sea level rise, watershed dynamics, water quality, hydrology, sediment and pollution transport, limnology, and ecological dynamics.
A general framework will be developed to study and predict the above phenomena using technical measures, new policies and guidelines, and the application of novel mathematical and computational models.