GoMRI Legacy

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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.

GoMRI Scholars 

The GoMRI Scholars Program was created to focus on the next generation of scientists, one of GoMRI’s best legacies, and the future of research in the Gulf of Mexico.  To be considered a GoMRI Scholar, graduate students must have participated in a GoMRI-funded project for at least one year, be primarily funded by GoMRI, and be working on a thesis or dissertation based on GoMRI-funded science.  You can learn more about the program and individual GoMRI Scholars here

In Memoriam

GoMRI was a massive, 10-year undertaking, involving over 4,500 researchers, lab techs, data and outreach specialists, students, and countless others who made the initiative possible and represent the GoMRI legacy. It is to that effect that GoMRI honors the eleven people who lost their lives in the Deepwater Horizon Macondo well accident: Jason Anderson, Aaron Dale Burkeen, Donald Clark, Stephen Ray Curtis, Gorgon Jones, Roy Wyatt Kemp, Karl Kepplinger Jr., Keith Blair Manuel, Dewey Revette, Shane Roshoto, and Adam Weise. 
Over the ten years of the program, several members of the GoMRI community were also lost. We remember a few of them below.

Ken Barbour

Benjamin Flower

Louis Guillette

Ray Highsmith

David Hollander

Matt Howard

George Ioup

Stan Kuczaj

John Reynolds

Ciro Sumaya

Wes Tunnell

We respectfully acknowledge there are others who contributed to the GoMRI legacy that have passed. As members of the GoMRI community, if there was a part of your team that is no longer with us today, please let us know and we’d be honored to add them.