Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC) researcher, Evelyn Otto, has recently completed her Master’s Degree in Chemistry, Biology, and Marine Sciences at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, Japan and has returned to Palau to continue her work with PICRC.


During her time at Ryukyus, Otto worked closely with Dr. Haruko Kurihara, an expert in ocean acidification and water quality.

Over the past two years, Otto conducted an evaluation of the effects of sewage outflow on the surrounding coral reef in order to better understand how increased nutrient levels affect the growth and health of corals that surround the outflow pipe in Malakal Bay.

Now that Otto has graduated, she is returning to PICRC to continue her position as researcher. With Otto back on board, she will take the lead on ocean acidification projects at the Center.

Ocean acidification is a pressing issue, not just in Palau, but around the world.

Thus, with the changing climate, PICRC is taking the lead in studying the effects of ocean acidification on Palau’s marine environment.

Since Otto worked under the supervision of Dr. Kurihara, she has gained experience and expertise in the field of ocean acidification, and as such, she is well-equipped to take over the ocean acidification projects conducted at the Center.

As the lead on the project, Evelyn will establish a monitoring protocol that will track the changes in the marine environment in relation to ocean acidification over a long period of time. [/restrict]