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Ship Location

San Pedro, USA

How Does Oil Affect Deep Water Ecosystems?

How Does Oil Affect Deep Water Ecosystems?

Dr. Erik Cordes, and Associate Professor at Temple University and part of the ECOGIG science team answers questions about how oil spills affect deep water ecosystems. 

On this cruise, the team is focusing on deep-sea corals, their associated communities, and their response to the oil spill. They are collecting corals for laboratory experiments and for analyses of coral and microbe response to natural oil seepage. To do so, they will re-image as many as possible of the same corals that they have been following over the last 4 years and collect corals for laboratory experiments and for analyses of coral and microbe response to natural seepage. 

The ECOGIG group, funded as a part of the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI), is looking at both natural oil and gas seepage into the Gulf of Mexico and ecosystem responses and effects directly attributable to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010. Learn more at . The 2015 ECOGIG cruise is a continuation of a 3-year partnership with OET to study the ecosystem-level response to oil and gas in the Gulf of Mexico. This is part of a larger research program by a group called the Ecosystem Impacts of Oil and Gas Inputs into the Gulf of Mexico (ECOGIG) Consortium, which is made up of scientists from a wide variety of disciplines studying current flow, ocean chemistry, microbial activity, deep-sea coral communities, and everything in between.