Now Available! GoMRI and Oil Spill Science Special Issue of Oceanography

The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) is pleased to announce a special issue of Oceanography Magazine: GoMRI: Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science. 

This special issue – a collaborative effort among scientists funded by GoMRI, the GoMRI Research Board, and the GoMRI management team – highlights scientific advances from the program. Twenty papers covering topics that range from how the spill affected marine ecosystems and the fate of oil in the marine environment, to data management, and education and outreach initiatives. Leading this effort were co-editors John Shepherd, Richard Shaw, Debra Benoit, Kenneth Halanych, and Charles Wilson.

Cover of the September 2016 Oceanography Magazine, Volume 29, Number 3

Cover of the September 2016 Oceanography Magazine, Volume 29, Number 3

To date, more than 3,000 GoMRI-funded researchers representing 278 institutions in 42 states and 17 countries have produced approximately 800 peer-reviewed publications. Continuing productivity of these and other GoMRI-funded scientific teams and individuals will ensure significant contributions to science, engineering, and outreach long after the GoMRI program has ended. The most powerful legacy of GoMRI will be the 2,000 young oil-spill scientists (post-doctoral fellows, graduate students and undergraduates) who are currently working or have worked alongside senior scientists.

Special issues of journals (like this Oceanography special issue), film documentaries, and partnerships with outreach organizations also comprise a significant component of the GoMRI legacy, and not least of which is the program itself, as Research Board Chair Dr. Rita Colwell has articulated, namely that

GoMRI provides an excellent model for industry to play a significant role in supporting independent, open, scientific research to foster discovery and at the same time help solve societal problems, inform decision-making, and address future environmental and public health challenges.”

A PDF copy of the special issue is available for purchase and download here.


The GoMRI is a 10-year independent research program established to study the effect, and the potential associated impact, of hydrocarbon releases on the environment and public health, as well as to develop improved spill mitigation, oil detection, characterization and remediation technologies.  An independent and academic 20-member Research Board makes the funding and research direction decisions to ensure the intellectual quality, effectiveness and academic independence of the GoMRI research.  All research data, findings and publications will be made publicly available.  The program was established through a $500 million financial commitment from BP.

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