Posts tagged with

ship groundings

How NOAA Supports Post-Storm Coral Restoration

Posted Thu, 12/06/2018 - 12:56
By Alyssa Gray, Office of Response and Restoration

As the Earth’s atmosphere and ocean continue to warm under the global threat of climate change, the future of coral reefs looks bleaker than ever before. With rising temperatures comes an increase in mass coral bleaching events, infectious disease outbreaks, and the process known as ocean acidification. Climate change not only affects the overall health of corals, it also impacts their resiliency. Changes to the frequency and intensity of tropical storms — another side effect of climate change — lead to storm seasons that do a massive amount of damage to coral reefs.

Incident Responses for May 2018

Posted Wed, 06/06/2018 - 16:39

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 eight incidents, including oil discharges, sunken vessels, and hazardous material releases.

Incident Responses for April 2018

Posted Fri, 05/04/2018 - 11:34

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.

Here are some of April’s notable incidents ... 

Restoring a Coral Reef Hit by Tanker in Puerto Rico

Posted Fri, 01/06/2017 - 18:18

A diver rescued live coral for emergency reattachment. Photo taken less than 12 hours after grounding shows how fast NOAA mobilized. (Sea Ventures Inc. photo)

U.S. coral reefs are impacted by 3 ­- 4 large groundings a year.  On Dec. 15, 2009 the danger became reality near Guayanilla Bay, Puerto Rico when the liquid natural gas carrier Matthew grounded on the coral reef there causing substantial harm. It wasn’t just the grounding that injured the coral. During attempts to free the tanker the bow of the ship was moved from side to side causing further injury to the reef structure.

Argo Merchant: The Birth of Modern Oil Spill Response

Posted Wed, 12/14/2016 - 13:56

When the Argo Merchant ran aground on Nantucket Shoals off Massachusetts early on Dec. 15, 1976, and spilled nearly 8 million gallons of heavy fuel oil, it became the worst marine oil spill the United States had seen. It also led to the eventual creation of the Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R).

In 1974, as work began on the Alaska pipeline, NOAA scientists and academics realized there were important unanswered questions about oil spills.

Why You Should Thank a Hydrographer

Posted Fri, 06/21/2013 - 14:05

World Hydrography Day is celebrated each year on June 21. But before we start thanking hydrographers, we first should explain: What is a hydrographer?

Basically, a hydrographer measures and documents the shape and features of the ocean floor and coasts. These scientists then create charts showing the ocean’s varying depths and the location of underwater obstructions, such as rocky outcroppings or shipwrecks. As our fellow NOAA colleagues at the Office of Coast Survey (an office full of hydrographers) further elaborate, “hydrographic surveying ‘looks’ into the ocean to see what the sea floor looks like,” with most of the work “primarily concerned with water depth.”