Monthly Archives: August 2013

Lesson Plans A Bug’s Life- Gulf of Mexico edition This experiment will test if the insects will die (i.e., the yellow color changing paper turning red once it comes in contact  with a weak basic solution) once they have come in contact with crude oil through various exposure routes.

Many times, people think about the environmental impacts of an oil spill and the main organisms (impacted) that come to mind are marine mammals, crustaceans, fish, birds, and even mollusks. Insects are often forgotten, but some species are closely associated to soil and plant life; therefore, some insects are of high ecological value. Some insects Read More

Lesson Plans Chia Pets in Oily Situations After the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill, a heavy layer of oiled vegetation mats were preventing the thick emulsified oil underneath from breaking down along Barataria Bay’s marshes. (NOAA/Scott Zengel)

Coastal wetland vegetation is essential to the coastal area because it provides a barrier for the local community, a nursery habitat for juvenile organisms, and a highly productive environment for the marine life. This form of vegetation has a very high potential to come in contact with pollution, originating from inshore or offshore sources, because Read More

Student Activities The Kids and the Cups – Teaching Oceanography Using Styrofoam OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Laura Spencer, a graduate student in Dr. Steven DiMarco’s lab, took cups from three classrooms with her on the Gulf Integrated Spill Research Tracer cruise (G03) in the Gulf of Mexico. The cups were lowered in the water on one of the CTD casts. When the CDT was raised, the 5 inch cups shrank to Read More

Publication Highlights Study: Wave Data Can Improve Forecasts that Help Search and Rescue Operations and Oil Spill Response – August 26, 2013 Wave_Data_590

Scientists with the Norwegian Meteorological Institute are quantifying wave effects for use in ocean models that predict the direction of surface water movement.  Calculations that go into these models have important implications and relevant applications: improving them can provide better information in time-critical situations such as accidents and disasters. Researchers found that “the predictability of Read More

Publication Highlights Study Describes Use of Oil Fingerprinting to Identify Source of 2012 Gulf Sheen – August 2013 oil_fingerprinting_580

Scientists from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and University of California, Santa Barbara 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. ←After researchers retrieved oil-coated screens used to collect samples from surface sheens, each screen was sectioned into several Read More

Citizen ScienceGoMRI Scientists CWC Involves All in the Family in Oil Spill Marsh Science CWC-FamilyMarshScience_2263a

“My mom would love this boat ride.” “I wish my child could walk the marshes.” Murt Conover, Senior Marine Educator and Aquarist with the Coastal Waters Consortium (CWC), often hears comments like these when leading teacher and student groups at the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON) facility. She thought it seemed like a “no brainer” Read More