Diana Moanga

Diana Moanga

Graduate Student


M.S. Marine Affairs and Policy (2015) – University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences.

B.A. Marine Affairs,  Ecosystem Science and Policy Minor (2013) – University of Miami – Graduated summa cum laude.

Research Interests

Mapping spatial patterns of change, natural resource conservation, ecosystem services, environmental policy.

Research Description

My research interests include mapping patterns of land use change throughout different landscapes, at various spatial scales, while analyzing their associated policy implications. I have studied different land cover change processes such as: quantifying the avoided carbon emission resulted from land conservation purchases, mapping and predicting dynamic agricultural changes, and designing ways to better visualize and understand wildfire threat across space and time. My work lies at the nexus of coupled human natural systems, and aims at enhancing our understanding of the effects of human actions, as well as showcasing interlinked land cover change processes and ecosystem changes. I use an array of spatial analysis, image processing, GIS, and remote sensing technologies to design new approaches of assessing the effectiveness of current conservation actions, and develop more effective strategies for natural resource protection and ecosystem resilience in the face of mounting natural and anthropogenic stressors.

My background in marine science was a catalyst that focused my attention to the importance of mapping patterns of change throughout the natural world. My previous research was dedicated to understanding the complex characteristics of marine ecosystems. I studied the genetic composition of diverse coral communities, and their subsequent shift under the intense pressure of dredging and sedimentation. I also explored the correlations between toxic algal blooms and physical environmental parameters, identifying bloom hot spot areas, and their effects on the local economy, human health, and coastal vulnerability.

Integrating my past and current research, I hope to develop a holistic understanding of the interlinkages present in the natural world, and the role of humans as a central part of this unique system.

Selected Publications

Moanga Diana, Biging Gregory, Radke John, Butsic Van (2020) The space–time cube as an approach to quantifying future wildfires in CaliforniaInternational Journal of Wildland Fire. https://doi.org/10.1071/WF19062

Diana Moanga, Isabel Schroeter, David Ackerly & Van Butsic (2018) Avoided land use conversions and carbon loss from conservation purchases in California, Journal of Land Use Science, DOI: 10.1080/1747423X.2018.1533043.

Laćan I, Moanga D, Butsic, V, McBride JR. (2019). “Sealed in San José:” paving of front yards and its effect diminishes on urban forest resource and benefits in low-density residential neighborhoods. Journal of Urban Forestry & Urban Greening.

Butsic V, Shapero M, Moanga D, Larson S. 2017. Using InVEST to assess ecosystem services on conserved properties in Sonoma County, CA. Calif Agr 71(2):81-89.

Glynn, P.W., Alvarado, J.J., Banks, S., Cortés, J., Feingold, J.S., Jiménez, C., Maragos, J.E., Martínez, P., Maté, J.L., Moanga, D.A. and Navarrete, S., 2017. Eastern Pacific coral reef provinces, coral community structure and composition: an overview. In Coral Reefs of the Eastern Tropical Pacific (pp. 107-176). Springer, Dordrecht.

Ackerly, David, John Battles, Van Butsic, Patrick Gonzalez, Maggi Kelly, Whendee Silver, David Saah, Stefania Di Tommaso, Allegra Mayer, Diana Moanga, Isabel Schroeter, Bruce Riordan. (University of California, Berkeley). 2018. Land Acquisition and Ecosystem Carbon in Coastal California. California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment. Publication number: CCCA4-EXT-2018-003.

Radke, J.D, G.S. Biging, K. Roverts, M. Schmidt-Poolman, H. Foster, E. Roe, Y. Ju, S. Lindbergh, T. Beach, L. Maier, Y. He, M. Ashenfarb, P. Norton, M. Wray, A. Alruheil, S. Yi, R. Rau, J. Collins, D. Radke, M. Coufal, S. Marx, D. Moanga, V. Ulyashin, A. Dalal. (University of California, Berkeley). 2018. Assessing Extreme Weather Related Vulnerability and Identifying Resilience Options for California’s Interdependent Transportation Fuel Sector. California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment, California Energy Commission. Publication Number: CCCA4-CEC-2018-012.

Moanga, D (2015). Karenia brevis Hot Spots in the West Florida Shelf and their Associated Socio-economic Implications. University of Miami Scholarly Repository.