The ultimate goal of the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) will be to improve society’s ability to understand, respond to, and mitigate the impacts of petroleum pollution and related stressors of the marine and coastal ecosystems, with an emphasis on conditions found in the Gulf of Mexico. The GoMRI will investigate the impacts of the oil, dispersed oil, and dispersant on the ecosystems of the Gulf of Mexico and affected coastal States in a broad context of improving fundamental understanding of the dynamics of such events and their environmental stresses and associated public health implications and concerns.
The GoMRI will also develop improved spill mitigation, oil and gas detection, characterization and remediation technologies. Knowledge accrued will be applied to restoration and to improving the long-term environmental health of the Gulf of Mexico.
The GoMRI Legacy Goals are meant to be achieved by the end of the program and include:
- Significantly advance the scientific understanding of the Gulf of Mexico, including its interactions with oil, dispersant, and dispersed oil by fostering the highest quality of research for the benefit of those who depend upon its ecosystems for their well-being.
- Engender improved understanding, confidence, and trust of the public and other stakeholders (e.g. business and industrial community, government, policy makers and managers/planners, media, K-12 educators, undergraduate and graduate students as future scientists, GoMRI research participants, and the national and international scientific community) and inform best science-based policy and management.
- Build intellectual capacity by: a) advancing relevant technologies; b) fostering research connectivity; c) building and maintaining an interactive GoMRI Gulf of Mexico database that can serve as a future baseline and to inform a more efficient future response; d) informing and training future scientists and engineers; and e) stimulating interest in STEM for K-12 students and educators.
- Demonstrate that the responsiveness of the GoMRI model is appropriate and effective in serving the public good by enabling and overseeing timely and independent research funded through a private-public partnership with industry.