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As if Yemen Needed More Woes, a Decrepit Oil Tanker Threatens Disaster


The task at hand is to keep a bad situation from getting worse, said Christopher M. Reddy, a marine scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. “We have a problem, it has a potential for harm, so how do we do it to create the least amount of damage?” he said.

Scientists Discover A New Material For Cleaning Up Oil Spills


In the middle of a battle like an oil spill, you want to have a very predictable material that is easily deployed and creates no uncertainty, says Chris Reddy, at WHOI. And these natural products carry just a lot more uncertainty. Despite this uncertainty, he says, maybe hair can teach us how to make better materials. And Georgia Tech’s David Hu says the study made him look at hair differently.

The many lifetimes of plastics

plastics by the numbers

Infographics strive to give us a sense of how long plastic goods will last in the environment. But is this information reliable? The findings of a new study from WHOI may surprise you.

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Fuel Barge Florida

Location: Buzzards Bay, off West Falmouth, Mass. Date: September 16, 1969 Lat./Long.: 41°35’57.60″N, 70°41’47.88″W Material spilled: No. 2 fuel oil Amount spilled: 189,000…

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Oil Barge Bouchard 65

Location: Buzzards Bay, near Cape Cod Canal Date: October 9, 1974 Lat./Long.: 41°37’58.10″N, 70°43’59.09″W Material spilled: Diesel fuel Amount spilled: 11,000 to 37,000…

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M/V Argo Merchant

Location: 29 miles southeast of Nantucket Island Date: December 15, 1976 Lat./Long.: 41°1’58.8″N, 69° 27’0″W Material spilled: No. 6 Fuel Oil and…

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Ixtoc I Oil Well

Location: Bay of Campeche, Gulf of Mexico Date: June 3, 1979 to March 23, 1980 Lat./Long.: 19°24’29.42″N, 92°19’36.64″W Material spilled: Crude oil…

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Supertanker Exxon Valdez

Location: Prince William Sound, Alaska Date: March 23, 1989 Lat./Long.: 60°34’23.53″N, 147°17’9.94″W Material spilled: North Slope crude oil Amount spilled: 10.8 million gallons…

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Tank Barge North Cape

Location: Block Island Sound off Moonstone Beach, R.I. Date: January 19, 1996 Lat./Long.: 41°22’10.43″N, 71°34’22.74″W Material spilled: No. 2 fuel oil Amount…

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Tank Barge Bouchard 120

Location: Buzzards Bay off Westport, Mass. Date: April 27, 2003 Lat./Long.: 41°29’22.10″N, 70°59’17.80″W Material spilled: No. 6 fuel oil Amount spilled: approx. 98,000…

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M/V Hebei Spirit

Location: Yellow Sea off Taean County, South Korea Date: December 7, 2007 Lat./Long.: 36°53’34.97″N, 126° 3’31.70″E Material spilled: Light crude oil Amount…

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M/V Cosco Busan

M/V Cosco Busan

Location: San Francisco Bay Date: November 7, 2007 Lat./Long.:  37°48’29.30″N, 122°23’8.06″W Material spilled: Bunker fuel Amount spilled: approx. 53,500 gallons Spill extent: 150 sq.…

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The Deepwater Horizon Disaster Fueled a Gulf Science Bonanza

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Chris Reddy is an expert in oil spill science who in 2010 helped determine the size, heading, and chemical composition of the underwater plume from an oceanographic research vessel and underwater robot near the Macondo well site, about 80 miles south of New Orleans.

Lessons from Deep Water Horizon – 10 years later

Ten years ago, Dr. Chris Reddy and dozens of his colleagues were called to the Gulf of Mexico to address what would soon become the largest human-caused oil spill in history. What have we learned a decade later? Join us as Chris takes a look back at how far we’ve come and answers your questions about what science can tell us about oil spills and the ongoing recovery on land and in the ocean.

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Deepwater Horizon – major findings and technological advances

Ten years ago, a powerful explosion destroyed an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 workers and injuring 17 others. Over a span of 87 days, the Deepwater Horizon well released an estimated 168 million gallons of oil and 45 million gallons of natural gas into the ocean, making it the largest accidental marine oil spill in history.

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What did scientists learn from Deepwater Horizon?

Ten years after the Deepwater Horizon explosion caused the largest accidental marine oil spill in history, WHOI marine geochemists Elizabeth Kujawinski and Christopher Reddy review what they— and their science colleagues from around the world—have learned.

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Summer’s coming: Will Cape Cod beaches be safe?


Beach parking lots across Cape Cod are closed to reduce the spread of COVID-19. As summertime approaches, will the beach crowds that normally show up after Memorial Day will be staying away this year? WHOI microbiologist Amy Apprill weighs in.

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Upper Cape Perspectives On Earth Day Shift Amid A Silent Spring

Mashpee Enterprise

“I think Earth Day has always been an opportunity to celebrate the environment around us and how we can take action,” said Judith McDowell, a scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole. “To me Rachel Carson is the epitome of what we choose to celebrate on Earth Day.”