ND Water Week Seminar: Debra Perrone


Location: Zoom

In honor of World Water Day, please join the Environmental Change Initiative for a virtual seminar presented by Debra Perrone, Assistant Professor, University of California, Santa Barbara.

Her talk is on "Groundwater Sustainability: Challenges and Solutions."


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Groundwater depletion is a complex problem that raises fundamental questions about solutions. Data themselves are not the solution, but they help us understand processes – human behaviors that influence demand, or physical processes that impact supply – and can provide insights in how to best manage groundwater in a just way.

This talk focuses on the results of a five-year endeavor to record construction details of millions of groundwater wells, profiling geographic regions where declining water levels are endangering reliable water access for ecosystems, irrigation, drinking water, and household use. This work underscores the importance and urgency of identifying mechanisms to ensure effective control of groundwater depletion.

Debra Perrone is an Assistant Professor of University of California, Santa Barbara’s (UCSB) Environmental Studies Program. Prior to joining the faculty at UCSB in 2017, Debra was a postdoctoral research scholar at the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University. She earned her PhD in Environmental Engineering at Vanderbilt University in 2014 and was awarded first honors as the Graduate School’s Founder’s Medalist.

Perrone integrates research methods from engineering, physical science, policy science, and law to inform water sustainability and water policy. She has published dozens of publications, including several in top scientific journals such as the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Science, Nature Sustainability, Nature Communications, and Nature. In 2019, Perrone co-authored an undergraduate textbook, Water Resources: Science and Society, which provides foundational information in water science and policy and highlights challenges and opportunities surrounding global water resources.

Join Notre Dame’s week-long celebration of all things H2O! To learn more about additional ND Water Week events, please visit