As response to the Deepwater Horizon incident continues, many offices within NOS are contributing existing expertise to response efforts. The stories on this page provide overviews of activities in which NOS is involved.
NOAA's Damage Assessment Remediation and Restoration Program continues to coordinate data collection efforts with natural resource trustees in five states (Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Texas), the Department of Interior (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service and Bureau of Land Management), and BP (the Responsible Party). More...
With multiple sanctuaries located in the Gulf of Mexico region, the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries has been on hand to support NOAA's oil spill response efforts since the first days following the Deepwater Horizon incident.
When a disaster like an oil spill occurs, one of NOAA’s important jobs is to measure and assess the impact on coastal and marine ecosystems so that measures can be taken to attempt to restore them to pre-spill conditions and to provide information for natural resource damage assessment. NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) plays a central role in this process.
As the nation's leading scientific resource for oil spills, NOAA has been on the scene of the Deepwater Horizon incident from the start, providing coordinated scientific services to federal, state, and local organizations. At the center of these efforts has been the Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R).
When responding to an oil spill the size of the one associated with the Deepwater Horizon incident, often the best perspective is from high above. NOAA's National Geodetic Survey (NGS) is on the scene of the spill providing just that by collecting aerial images to capture a bird's eye view of the spill and coastal areas in the Gulf of Mexico.
In support of the Deepwater Horizon incident, NOAA's Coastal Services Center is helping assess potential impacts and get information into the hands of the coastal communities who need it.
Following an oil spill, responders need information such as water levels, current speed and direction, wind speed and direction, and wave heights. This information is collected by a variety of organizations (including NOS) using satellites, buoys, tide gauges, radar stations, and underwater vehicles. The Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS®) helps bring this information together, so that it can be coordinated and made available to those who need it.
Determining where oil will move following a spill requires knowing how the water and wind are moving as well. The Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services (CO-OPS) operates and maintains an extensive network of approximately 60 coastal measurement systems throughout the Gulf of Mexico that collect and provide this verified information.
In its role as NOAA's direct connection to state Coastal Zone and National Estuarine Research Reserves programs, the Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management (OCRM) is helping states prepare for potential impacts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
To help mariners safely navigate in the Gulf region following the Deepwater BP incident, the Office of Coast Survey is producing daily updates to nautical chart products that display the spill zone forecast based on current spill projections. The charts depict the 48-hour forecast for oil location, juxtaposed against the standard safety fairways that lead to port approaches.