BOEMRE leads study of deepwater communities post-Deepwater Horizon spill

October 28, 2010

NEW ORLEANS -- The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) today announced that a team of scientists led by BOEMRE geophysicist Bill Shedd will embark tomorrow morning on a research cruise that will examine deep sea coral and chemosynthetic community sites in the Gulf of Mexico. Findings from this research will help scientists discover the possible effects of the large volumes of oil released in the deepwater following the Deepwater Horizon blowout and spill.

The cruise, funded by BP through the Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA), will depart from Freeport, Texas on October 29, 2010, for the ten day cruise. Biologists and geoscientists from BOEMRE, Penn State University, Temple University, and Florida State University will conduct the research aboard the R/V Gyre, owned and operated by TDI Brooks, Inc.

"This study is one of several analyses that BOEMRE environmental scientists are conducting to consider potential effects from the Deepwater Horizon blowout and spill. This data collection is central to our efforts to better understand the effects of the spill," said BOEMRE Director Michael R. Bromwich. "BOEMRE scientists have studied hard-bottom communities throughout the Gulf of Mexico since they were first discovered nearly 25 years ago. These studies have led to the development and implementation of important safeguards to protect these important habitats."

Scientists will tow a "camera sled" or cage with a high-resolution digital still camera that will take photos every five seconds from about six feet off the seafloor of sites that the BOEMRE team has determined are likely to have hard ground biological communities. These communities include deep sea corals and chemosynthetic organisms, such as tube worms and mussels, which eat oil, gas and hydrogen sulfide being released from natural seeps on the seafloor.

"Though these organisms depend on the natural oil and gas seeps for sustenance from below, they cannot tolerate oil settling on them from above, which prevents oxygen absorption and causes suffocation," said Shedd, a geophysicist for the BOEMRE's Gulf of Mexico Region, who will serve as Chief Scientist for the cruise. "The data we collect will help us identify impact on these communities."

BOEMRE geoscientists have mapped over 9,700 such sites in the Gulf of Mexico, dozens of which are near the spill site. The 17 sites chosen for the study have been selected by careful analysis of 3-D seismic data and are located from 2.5 to 60 miles away from the Macondo well at Mississippi Canyon 252.
-end-


Bureau of Ocean Energy Management

Related Data Articles from Brightsurf:

Keep the data coming
A continuous data supply ensures data-intensive simulations can run at maximum speed.

Astronomers are bulging with data
For the first time, over 250 million stars in our galaxy's bulge have been surveyed in near-ultraviolet, optical, and near-infrared light, opening the door for astronomers to reexamine key questions about the Milky Way's formation and history.

Novel method for measuring spatial dependencies turns less data into more data
Researcher makes 'little data' act big through, the application of mathematical techniques normally used for time-series, to spatial processes.

Ups and downs in COVID-19 data may be caused by data reporting practices
As data accumulates on COVID-19 cases and deaths, researchers have observed patterns of peaks and valleys that repeat on a near-weekly basis.

Data centers use less energy than you think
Using the most detailed model to date of global data center energy use, researchers found that massive efficiency gains by data centers have kept energy use roughly flat over the past decade.

Storing data in music
Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed a technique for embedding data in music and transmitting it to a smartphone.

Life data economics: calling for new models to assess the value of human data
After the collapse of the blockchain bubble a number of research organisations are developing platforms to enable individual ownership of life data and establish the data valuation and pricing models.

Geoscience data group urges all scientific disciplines to make data open and accessible
Institutions, science funders, data repositories, publishers, researchers and scientific societies from all scientific disciplines must work together to ensure all scientific data are easy to find, access and use, according to a new commentary in Nature by members of the Enabling FAIR Data Steering Committee.

Democratizing data science
MIT researchers are hoping to advance the democratization of data science with a new tool for nonstatisticians that automatically generates models for analyzing raw data.

Getting the most out of atmospheric data analysis
An international team including researchers from Kanazawa University used a new approach to analyze an atmospheric data set spanning 18 years for the investigation of new-particle formation.

Read More: Data News and Data Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.