What is Sensitivity Mapping, and Why is it Important?

Posted Tue, 11/12/2019 - 12:23
By Donna L. Roberts, Office of Response and Restoration

This week, we’re taking a closer look at what sensitivity mapping is, how it’s used, and why it’s so important. A snapshot of the resources in a specific area, sensitivity mapping can be a valuable tool both in and out of the spill response community. 

Incident Responses for October 2019

Posted Fri, 11/08/2019 - 11:56

Every month our Emergency Response Division provides scientific expertise and services to the U.S. Coast Guard on everything from running oil spill trajectories to model where the spill may spread, to possible effects on wildlife and fisheries and estimates on how long the oil may stay in the environment. This month OR&R responded to 23 incidents, including oil discharges, sunken vessels, and other pollution-related incidents. Here are some of October's notable incidents ...

Rivers of the 'Dammed,' Rising from the Grave

Posted Thu, 10/31/2019 - 15:32
By Megan Ewald, Office of Response and Restoration

*A Halloween Spooky Science Story 

Once there were six waterways cursed by pollution. 

But terrifying toxins and oozing oil spills were not the first dooms to befall these rivers, each of them had already been dammed. The dams had been constructed for a variety of important reasons, but as the years passed and they fell out of use, an evil crept over them. 

Homewaters: Exploring Waterways that Inspire, from Florida to Ireland

Posted Thu, 10/24/2019 - 19:24

Everyone at NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration plays a crucial role in our mission. For many of us, our journey into the marine world can be traced back to a special place that first sparked a love of water and wild places. This first installment of our new monthly series “Homewaters” explores some of the waters that kindled a passion that would go on to last a lifetime.

Exercising Oil Spill Preparedness on Virginia’s Eastern Shore

Posted Fri, 10/18/2019 - 12:36
By Frank Csulak, Office of Response and Restoration

The ocean side of Virginia’s Eastern Shore extends from Assateague Island at the Maryland border to Fisherman’s Island at the foot of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. It is comprised of 23 dynamic islands, made up of sand, wetlands, and lagoons, and is one of the largest undeveloped stretches of shoreline along the East Coast. The Virginia Barrier Islands are remote, ecologically valuable, and highly sensitive to oil spills.

How Much Do Coastal Ecosystems Protect People from Storms and What Is It Worth?

Posted Fri, 10/11/2019 - 12:40

In 2013, one lawsuit spurred the question — how much do coastal ecosystems protect people from storms and what is that worth? It's a question NOAA scientists and economists are working to answer. At NOAA, our job is to protect our coasts, but often, coastal ecosystems are the ones protecting us. 

Incident Responses for September 2019

Posted Fri, 10/04/2019 - 15:03

Every month our Emergency Response Division provides scientific expertise and services to the U.S. Coast Guard on everything from running oil spill trajectories to model where the spill may spread, to possible effects on wildlife and fisheries and estimates on how long the oil may stay in the environment.

This month OR&R responded to 12 incidents, including oil discharges, sunken vessels, and other pollution-related incidents.

National Geodetic Survey Disaster Response

Posted Mon, 09/23/2019 - 14:50
By Dave Gothan, NOAA National Geodetic Survey

This week, during National Preparedness Month, OR&R is taking a closer look at some of the disaster response roles our office and its partners serve in being prepared for both natural and human-caused disasters. In today’s blog, learn more about an important partner in preparedness within NOAA — the National Geodetic Survey.