The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI) has announced thirty-one grants totaling nearly $50 million in support of research into the effects of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon incident on the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem.
The final round of two-year grants awarded by GoMRI, a ten-year research program established with a $500 million commitment from BP following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, will support studies across the program's five thematic areas: the physical distribution, dispersion, and dilution of petroleum, its constituents, and associated contaminants; the chemical evolution and biological degradation of those contaminants and their subsequent interaction with ecosystems; the environmental effects on the sea floor, coastal waters, beach sediments, wetlands, and organisms and the science of ecosystem recovery; technology developments for improved response, mitigation, detection, characterization, and remediation; and the behavioral, socioeconomic, and environmental impact of oil spills on public health.
"The findings from these studies benefit society by informing new strategies to prevent and mitigate any negative effects of an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, or elsewhere," said Rita Colwell, chairman of the GoMRI Research Board. "I am pleased that GoMRI is a leader in efforts to ensure that research data are preserved and made available for the public and future researchers. GoMRI requires researchers it funds to make all data available to others via its data management system, GRIIDC. More than fifteen hundred datasets have been archived and are available for further research. The database continues to increase as research is completed and published."
For descriptions of the projects receiving funding, see the GoMRI website.
(Photo credit: Jess Snyder)