GoMRI Newsletter: Winter Issue 2017

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Above the Fold

“C-IMAGE Partners with Story Collider to Share Oil Spill Science Stories”
“2017 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science Conference Brings Together Oil Spill Scientists and GoMRI Community in New Orleans”
“GoMRI Attends Restore America’s Estuaries Summit in New Orleans”
“RECOVER Launches New Virtual Lab”
“LADC-GEMM Hosts SeaGlide Workshop in New Orleans”
Frequently Asked Questions by Chuck Wilson
Note from the Research Board Chair
Education Spotlight
GoMRI Researcher Interview with Dr. Jacinta Conrad


Community Happenings

Science Corner

Published Science Highlights from the GoMRI Program

Study Summarizes Current Knowledge on Marine Oil Snow During and After Deepwater Horizon
K.L. Daly, U. Passow, J. Chanton, D. Hollander
Anthropocene, 2016, Vol. 13, pgs. 18-33

Study Advances Predictions of Air Pollution from Oil Slick Evaporation
G.T. Drozd, D.R. Worton, C. Aeppli, C.M. Reddy, H. Zhang, E. Variano, A.H. Goldstein
Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 2015, Vol. 120(11), pgs. 7300-7315

Study Finds UVB Radiation Increases Oil Toxicity in Marine Copepod Larvae
R. Almeda, T.E. Harvey, T.L. Connelly, S. Baca, E.J. Buskey
Chemosphere, 2016, Vol. 152, pgs. 446-458

Study Provides 1st Large-Scale Blue Crab Transcriptome Resource for Insights into Oil Exposure
B.K. Yednock, T.J. Sullivan, J.E. Neigel
BMC Genomics, 2015, Vol. 16(521)

Study Describes Oil Slick Differences in Natural Seeps and Deepwater Horizon
I. MacDonald, O. Garcia-Pineda, A. Beet, S. D. Asl, L. Feng, G. Graettinger, D. French-McCay, J. Holmes, C. Hu, F. Huffer, L. Leifer, F. Muller-Karger, A. Solow, M.Silva, G. Swayze
Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 2015, Vol. 120(12), pgs. 8364-8380

Rapid Response Study Documents Marine Microbial Response to Hercules Gas Blowout
S.C. Weber, L. Peterson, J.J. Battles, B.J. Roberts, R.N. Peterson, D.J. Hollander, J.P. Chanton, S.B. Joye, J.P. Montoya
Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 2016, Vol. 129, pgs. 66-76

Study Advances Food Web Matrix for Improved Atlantis Ecosystem Model
J.H. Tarnecki, A.A. Wallace, J.D. Simons, C.H. Ainsworth
Fisheries Research, 2016, Vol.179, pgs. 237-250

Study Examines Killifish Rapid Adaptive Resistance to Contaminants
E.M. Oziolor, B. Dubansky, W.W. Burggran, C.W. Matson
Aquatic Biology, 2016, Vol. 175, pgs. 222-231

Study Identifies Ocean Processes That Drive Surface Material Clustering
G.A. Jacobs, H.S. Huntley, A.D. Kirwan, Jr., B.L. Lipphardt, Jr., T. Campbell, T. Smith, K. Edwards, B. Bartels
Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans, 2016, Vol. 121(1), pgs. 180-197

Study Finds No Obvious Recovery from Oiled Island Shoreline Erosion
R.E. Turner, G. McClenachan, A. W. Tweet
Marine Pollution Bulletin, 2016, Vol. 100(1), pgs. 316-323

Study Introduces Computer Science Students to Problem Solving Using Deepwater Horizon Imagery
M. Zhang, C. Hu, G. Amu
Frontiers in Education 2013 Conference Proceedings, IEEE

To see all GoMRI publications, please visit the GoMRI Publication Database.

Video Clip of the Quarter

RFP-V awardee Dr. Villy Kourafalou, Research Professor in the Department of Ocean Sciences at the Rosentiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami, and her team partnered with Waterlust to create a short video on ocean eddies. The video explains that eddies are capable of transporting nutrients, heat, etc. all over the planet. An eddy in the Gulf of Mexico even helped contain some oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Check out the video here.

Scientists with C-IMAGE are using sediment cores from the bottom of the ocean to learn about changes in sedimentation rates during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and the formation of marine oil snow sedimentation and flocculation accumulation (MOSSFA) events. Traditionally, sediment core sampling has taken place at the centimeter or half- centimeter scale, but depending on the sedimentation rate, this sampling interval is often not detailed enough to understand short- term events. Patrick Schwing and others from C-IMAGE recently published a new method of sampling sediment cores that allows for millimeter-scale resolution. Their publication includes a video that details the strategy. Check out the video and the publication here.

GoMRI Newsmakers

GoMRI congratulates Dr. Rita Colwell, Chair of the GoMRI Research Board, on two recent honors. Dr. Colwell was awarded the 2015 Mahathir Science Award, given annually by the Mahathir Science Award Foundation and the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, to scientists who have made great contribautions to the field of tropical medicine and research relating to infectious diseases and their spread. She was also selected as a National Academy of Inventors Fellow. This honor is given to academic inventors who have “demonstrated a prolific innovative spirit in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that make a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and welfare of society.” Dr. Colwell has several patents in computational biology, and her company CosmosID has produced many inventions and innovations toward the advancement of DNA sequencing of the human micro biome. The diversity of these awards illustrates the breadth of Dr. Colwell’s many significant contributions to science, and the GoMRI community extends its congratulations to her on receiving these honors.

GoMRI Scholars in Action

The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) is recognizing the graduate students whose vital research contributes to improving understanding about the damage, response, and recovery of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Candidates for this program must be graduate students who have participated in a GoMRI-funded project for at least one year, whose work is primarily funded by GoMRI, and who are working on a dissertation or thesis based on GoMRI-funded science.

Learn more about the scholars’ research and career paths on the GoMRI website:

Sea Grant

The Gulf of Mexico Sea Grant Oil Spill Science Outreach Team co-chaired a session at the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) conference, which took place from November 6-10, 2016 in Orlando, Florida. The session was called Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill – The Discoveries and Outreach and featured a presentation by Emily Maung- Douglass on Sharing the science being the spill: The partnership of the Gulf of Mexico Sea Grant programs and the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative.

Larissa Graham attended the Restore America’s Estuaries Summit in New Orleans, Louisiana from December 11-14, 2016 in partnership with GoMRI Management Team members and GRIIDC. She also moderated a session that featured several speakers from the GoMRI community called Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Impacts to Coastal Wildlife, Fish Populations, and Wetlands in the Barataria Bay, Louisiana. A full summary of that conference can be found here.

The Team hosted a workshop ahead of the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science (GoMOSES) conference on February 6, 2017 in New Orleans, Louisiana called Exploring the Intersection Between Oil Spill Science and Response. The goals of the workshop were to discuss how scientists and responders can work together on oil spill response events. The workshop included presentations by Dave Westerholm, Director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s Office of Response and Restoration; Paige Doelling, NOAA Scientific Support Coordinator; Commander Kelly Denning, U.S. Coast Guard Sector New Orleans, Response Department Head; Lt. Ryan Dickson, U.S. Coast Guard; Tim Nedwed, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company; Edward Overton, GoMRI-funded scientist and Emeritus Professor, Louisiana State University; and Eugene Turner, GoMRI-funded scientist and Professor, Louisiana State University. More information on this workshop can be found here.

The Team has also released several new publications in recent months. The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill’s Impact on People’s Health: Increases in Stress and Anxiety explores how the oil spill impacted the mental health of residents of the coastal Gulf communities. Read the publication here. Frequently Asked Questions: Oil Edition features general information on oil, including what it is, how it gets released into the environment and what happens to it once it’s there, and how scientists can track it. Read the publication here.

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