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Hope everyone had a successful and busy summer.

Keeping you current on emerging Gulf science and the people investigating the effects of oil spills on the environment and public health.

August 23, 2016                                                                    GoMRI eNews


Grad Student Boyette Maps Plankton to Better Understand the Nearshore Environment

Study Details Underwater Oil Plume Formation and Droplet Size Distribution

From the Archives

How Grad Student Chen Navigates the Whirlpool of Oil Transport

Posted on August 20, 2015
Bicheng Chen is dedicated to seeking the physical explanations behind everyday phenomena. His research on ocean turbulence and numerical modeling led him to investigate the interactions among wind, waves, and turbulence and their effect on oil transport and dispersion.

Grad Student Saha Makes Strides towards an Eco-friendly Dispersant Alternative

Posted on August 18, 2014
Amitesh Saha is on a mission to find safer alternatives to dispersants currently being used in oil spill cleanup.

Study Describes Use of Oil Fingerprinting to Identify Source of 2012 Gulf Sheen

Posted on August 12, 2013
Scientists used a novel fingerprinting technique to identify the source of oil sheens that appeared in late 2012 near the site of the Deepwater Horizon disaster.

Follow the Journey of CARTHE Drifters in the Gulf

Posted on August 18, 2012
Hundreds of data-collecting ocean drifters are “going with the flow” in the Gulf of Mexico. Their journey can be seen in an animated video that Dr. Bruce Lipphardt, with the CARTHE project team at the University of Delaware, generates and updates regularly.


Study's Marine Food Web Matrix by Functional Group Improves Ecosystem Modeling
Progression of a Gulf of Mexico food web supporting Atlantis ecosystem model development  Tarnecki, J.H.; Wallace, A.A.; Simons, J.D.; Ainsworth, C.H. Fisheries Research, 2016, Volume 179, 237–250

Study Identifies Oil Impacts on Mahi-Mahi Biological Processes
Time- and oil-dependent transcriptomic and physiological responses to Deepwater Horizon oil in mahi-mahi (Coryphaena hippurus) embryos and larvae.  Xu, E.G.; Mager, E.M.; Grosell, M.; Pasparakis, C.; Schlenker, L.S.; Stieglitz, J.D.; Benetti, D.D.; Hazard, E.S.; Courtney, S.M.; Diamante, G.; Freitas, J.; Hardiman, G.T.; Schlenk, D. Environmental Science & Technology,  2016, 50 (14), pp 7842–7851


Identifying key species in marsh food web responses to The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: A literature review -- Data Link

Surface velocity field reconstruction during the Grand Lagrangian Deployment (GLAD) experiment through Lagrangian Variational Analysis (LAVA) in the deep northeastern Gulf of Mexico, September 2012 -- Data Link

Dataset for: Ingestion and sublethal effects of physically and chemically (Corexit) dispersed crude oil on marine planktonic copepods -- Data Link


GoMRI RFP-V: Biodegradation & ecosystem recovery in coastal marine sediments (Huettel)

GoMRI RFP-V: Biodegradation & ecosystem recovery in coastal marine sediments (Huettel)
The A systems approach to improve predictions of biodegradation and ecosystem recovery in coastal marine sediments impacted by oil spill project is lead by P.I. Markus Huettel, Florida State University.

Transport via pore water flows in submerged sand beds is slower than the gas transport in dry sand, but water can transport dissolved nutrients to buried hydrocarbons. It is therefore hypothesized that microbial oil degradation in dry, temporally wet and water-saturated sediments differ. A quantitative understanding of the mechanisms controlling these differences is a central prerequisite for the modeling of oil decomposition in these coastal ecosystems. The main goals of this project therefore are to link microbial degradation of buried oil and associated transport processes, and to integrate these data in a model that allows predictions of pathways and rates of oil degradation, and thus, forecasting recovery pathways in future oil spills. 


The Call for Abstracts is now open the 2017 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science Conference
The 2017 conference theme, “Ecosystem Approaches to Gulf Response and Restoration,” encourages researchers to consider the application of their results to practical use.  Scientific research will be critical to informing planning, preparedness, response and recovery for future events, and connecting this to decision makers in the response and restoration communities will be key.

Workshop: Oil Spill Response 101 and Exploring the Role of Environmental Research during Response
C-IMAGE is co-hosting a half day workshop with Exxon/Mobil at the Clean Gulf Conference this November in Tampa. This API-sponsored session will give a full review of what happens in the response community during an oil spill: Discuss the current role of science data in response, Foster relationships between the research and response community, Discuss the appropriate role of academic research in a response, and Understand role of ‘operational research’ in response. In order to sign up for our Tuesday workshop, simply RSVP to Sherryl Gilbert ( to confirm attendance. 

Sea Grant to host Technology & Deepwater Horizon Seminar in August 
August 30, 2016 – Miami, FL: This seminar will give attendees a glimpse of the technologies that were used during DWH oil spill or have come about as a result of it. The seminar will be streaming live so you can participate remotely. For more information, click here.

2016 Mississippi-Alabama Bays and Bayous Symposium - Call for Abstracts
Program Committee is seeking presenters for the coastal symposium Nov. 30-Dec. 1 in Biloxi, MS. Please consider sharing your research, education, outreach policy, or other efforts at the event.

Project Activities

CARTHE Introduces Foster Children to Ocean Science and Drifters
Consortium outreach taught foster children aged first grade through high school about marine science topics such as currents, air-sea interactions, and hurricane intensity. The students then helped paint drift cards with unique designs and color for the upcoming Biscayne Bay study, Bay Drift.
C-IMAGE Researchers Scour Mexico Coastline for Oil
The researchers’ Tunnell Trek is taking them around the Campeche Coast collecting sediment cores and tar samples for chemical and microbial analysis. They have so far found tar and even liquid from older spills that could possibly belong to Ixtoc I.
CONCORDE Postdoc Offers Global Insights to Mixing Study
Sally Warner visited eleven Asian countries and four African countries during her 241-day study of the way various cultures related to their local body of water. She is now using her experience to combine physical oceanography with global environmental issues. Learn more about her and her research here.
Meet CRGC Grad Student Bria Means
Bria is a Public Administration masters student at the University of South Alabama and a research assistant with the consortium. Learn about her background and research activities!
CWC Blog Highlights Researcher Gregory Olsen
Olsen is analyzing sediments for trace crude oil components as well as biomarker analysis and fingerprinting for specific crude oils. Hear his thoughts on the ups and downs of scientific research here.
DEEPEND Scientists Catch Record Size Anglerfish
While most individuals of this species measure roughly the size of a golf ball, the adult female anglerfish captured during the consortium’s ongoing research cruise measured six inches! Read more about this strange fish and its peculiar mating habits here.
DROPPS Scientists Brief Responders on Oil Fate
Ed Buskey and Hernando Bacosa recently presented to a group of oil spill responders about what happened to dispersed Deepwater Horizon oil. Data collected in cooperation with first responders could be very important for uncovering human health impacts to those involved with the initial spill.
Copyright © 2016 Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative, All rights reserved.

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