NOAA Offices Partnering to Collect Satellite Imagery of Stranded Whales

Posted Thu, 11/10/2022 - 13:02
By Doug Helton, NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration, and Elizabeth Stratton, NOAA Fisheries

NOAA is the lead U.S. federal agency responsible for the conservation and protection of cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises) and pinnipeds (seals and sea lions). Within NOAA, that role is delegated to NOAA Fisheries, but sometimes other NOAA offices are called in to help. In this instance, "helping" involved dealing with a stranded whale carcass.

Sending Whale Carcasses to Davy Jones’ Locker: A Spooky Science Story

Posted Mon, 10/31/2022 - 01:11
By Megan Ewald, Office of Response and Restoration

When whales wash onto beaches they create a stinky and potentially dangerous hazard. After NOAA or local marine mammal experts have responded and investigated the cause of death, the next step is getting the carcass off the beach. 

Incident Responses for September 2022

Posted Thu, 10/20/2022 - 13:15

Every month, OR&R’s 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 identifying possible effects on wildlife and fisheries and estimates on how long the oil may stay in the environment. So far this year, OR&R has provided support to 121 incidents. In September 2022, OR&R provided response support to 19 incidents, including 10 new incidents in nine different states

Using Response Technology and Tools to Prevent and Remove Marine Debris

Posted Fri, 10/07/2022 - 11:29
By the NOAA Marine Debris Program Response Team

Hurricanes, typhoons, earthquakes, and tsunamis are among nature's most powerful and destructive events, and when these natural disasters strike, they can create massive amounts of debris. That’s why NOAA's Marine Debris Program, within the Office of Response and Restoration, is participating in National Preparedness Month and highlighting NOAA technology, tools, and resources created to help prevent and respond to disaster-generated marine debris. 

Spotting Spills from Space

Posted Wed, 09/28/2022 - 13:24
By Donna L. Roberts and Doug Helton, Office of Response and Restoration

In the decades that NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration has been providing scientific support for responses to oil and chemical spills, OR&R scientists have developed a trove of specialized tools to help them do their work. Responders today can even spot spills from space with a trajectory tool and a little help from an important partner.

Floating Bioassays: New Tool Helps Track and Assess Toxicity in Oil Spills

Posted Tue, 09/27/2022 - 15:31
By Megan Ewald and Sarah Allan, Office of Response and Restoration

At first glance, the blue surface of the open ocean seems like an empty place. But if you look closely, life teems just beneath the surface. Tiny, transparent fish eggs, larval invertebrates, and other planktonic organisms float and drift at the mercy of wind and ocean currents. 

NOAA’s Response Asset Directory: Helping NOAA Streamline Disaster Response

Posted Mon, 09/26/2022 - 15:19
By Leah Odeneal, Office of Response and Restoration

Cataloging assets can be a daunting task. Where do you begin? What should be included in your inventory? How should it be categorized? How often should the inventory be reviewed and updated? Fortunately, several years ago, NOAA’s Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center developed an asset directory that provides structure, guidance, and a user-friendly design.