Promoting Research

TRIF-WEES Supports Faculty 

WEES works with departments across The University of Arizona to attract and retain some of the best researchers in their field. Since 2017, TRIF-WEES supported salaries and/or startup funding for 20 faculty located in ten different departments at UA. In addition, TRIF-WEES supported 20 equipment purchases and 26 research grants during this period. These funds enable students, catalyze research, and make possible activities such as pilot studies or workshops that help UA be more competitive for large extramural funding opportunities. 


TRIF-WEES Enables Students 

student breakdown

WEES enables students through assistantships, wages, scholarships, grants, and research or outreach experiences.

TRIF-WEES Invests in Centers and Institutes 

WEES strategically invests so that there is a high return to Arizona and its people. One way we accomplish this is by supporting the University of Arizona centers and institutes that have strong connections to industry and the public and that increase knowledge transfer and collaboration. Since 2017, institutional support has been provided to the Water Resources Research Center (WRRC), the Center for Environmentally Sustainable Mining (CESM), the Institute for Energy Solutions (IES), and the Center for Climate Adaptation Science and Solutions (CCASS). In addition, TRIF-WEES funds are used for research and equipment grants that support Biosphere 2, the Water and Sustainable Technology (WEST) Center, and the Institute of the Environment (IE). These centers, taken as a group, provide outstanding value to Arizonans, bringing UA science, innovations, and outreach to businesses, industry, professionals, the public, and children throughout the state. 

The Water Resources Research Center

Water touches the life of every person in Arizona and the Water Resources Research Center is the go-to organization for information and engagement.  Its mission is to tackle key policy and management issues, empower informed decision-making, and enrich understanding through engagement, education, and applied research. As a research and extension unit of the UA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the WRRC has a history of advancing knowledge on water-related issues, engaging stakeholders in knowledge generation, and disseminating that knowledge widely.  The WRRC is also part of the National Institutes for Water Resources, which works to address the unique water-related concerns of the individual states and the nation as a whole by providing a national platform for collaboration. GREATER DEPTH, BROADER PERSPECTIVE FOR A CLEAR WATER FUTURE


Water Resources Research Center


Center for Environmentally Sustainable Mining

CESM logo

The Center For Environmentally Sustainable Mining was initiated using funding from TRIF-WEES with a mission to develop educational and research initiatives that address environmental issues related to mining activities in arid and semi-arid environments. Since 2011, CESM has facilitated research water conservation, dust suppression, revegetation efficiency, water contamination. The center has also spearheaded community engagement programs focused on evaluating exposure risks in population centers adjacent to active mining operations or downstream from historic sites affected by acid-mine drainage.

Institute for Energy Solutions (IES)

IES promotes the integration of renewable energy into the grid through the Power Forecasting Group and energy storage research initiatives; develops novel materials for energy conversion, energy-efficient water use and intelligent building technologies; supports regional testing and facilities; and studies the societal and economic impacts of these advancements. Through partnerships, the Institute expands its breadth of social, scientific, economic, and engineering capabilities to transfer knowledge from the laboratory to the field.

IES logo

Center for Climate Adaptation Science and Solutions

CCASS logo

The Center for Climate Adaptation Science and Solutions (CCASS) brings together a wealth of expertise at the University of Arizona to support sound management choices in the context of climate change, linking science, information needs of managers, and decision-making. CCASS provides services and benefits to both stakeholders and affiliates from the UA as they work to connect rapidly evolving scientific understanding of a changing climate with management practices in the U.S. and internationally. 

Bioshpere 2

The Biosphere 2 is a powerful large-scale experimental apparatus. Owned and operated by the University of Arizona, this facility provides a unique approach to catalyzing interdisciplinary thinking and understanding about Earth processes. Alongside its vast research potential, the facility acts as a center for outreach, environmental education, and a place to understand Earth systems planning and management. Research occurs in seven model ecosystems. Within these ecosystems, researchers are assessing the effect of a changing climate on coral reefs, how rock turns to soil, where trees get their water, among many others. 

solar panel field

WEST Center

West center

The WEST Center is a leading-edge venue focused on advanced water and wastewater treatment and monitoring, alternative energy and related technologies. WEST is co-located with Pima County's Agua Nueva Water Reclamation Facility and is adjacent to reclaimed water recharge basins and constructed wetlands – all of which compose a Water Reclamation Campus. WEST is unique in its ability to conduct the translational research necessary to advance the sustainable technologies of the future. With large portions of the United States currently affected by drought, WEST Center is poised to answer some of the nation's biggest questions about sustainable water and energy use.

Institute of the Environment

The Institute of the Environment is a team of scientists, staff, and students specializing in climate adaptation, stewardship of the American West, and environmental arts and humanities with the goal of advancing innovative solutions to environmental challenges in Arizona around the planet. Located in the ENR2 building on The University of Arizona's Tucson campus, IE leverages its location and the local expertise to help societies make the best-informed decisions for a sustainable future. IE invests in creative scholarship and cutting-edge research, promote the environmental enterprise of the University, and trains students and faculty alike to convey their insights to the world.


The University of Arizona Controlled Environment Agriculture Center


The Controlled Environment Agriculture Center (CEAC) facilities consist of two 2850 ft2 research greenhouses, two 1200 ft2 High Tunnel greenhouses, 1875 ft2 aquaponics greenhouse, 2250 ft2 Mars-Lunar Greenhouse Lab, 770 ft2 UAgFarm (Vertical Farm) facility, and a 5200 ft2 Teaching commercial style greenhouse.   In addition, there are three 120 ft2 walk-in growth chambers, a 5000 ft2 office, laboratory, classroom building, as well as various greenhouse and operations support structures. The greenhouse systems are controlled by commercial greenhouse climate control system. The CEAC facility is part of the UA Campus Agriculture Center, and is staffed by 4 faculty, 2 technical support staff, and an administrative assistant. Greenhouse college-supported staff include 4 technical staffs dedicated for greenhouse maintenance). The Campus Agriculture Center also has greenhouse space (14,752 ft2 in total) available for UA faculty’s research.

Arizona Laboratory for Emerging Contaminants 

The laboratory facility is dedicated to providing state-of-the-art analyses of organic and inorganic micro-pollutants to faculty, staff and students engaged in water sustainability research. Our intent is to develop novel analytical and bioanalytical (e.g. in vitro) methods for effective detection, quantification, and measurement of biological effects of trace contaminants in real-world matrices, and to apply these methods to the diversity of sample types being investigated by researchers at Arizona's three state universities.


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