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Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone Larger than Predicted After Heavy June Rains

Scientists supported by NOAA NCCOS, EPA and the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative have mapped the size of the 2015 Gulf of Mexico low-oxygen dead zone. The areal extent of hypoxia measures approximately 6,474 square miles, about the size of Connecticut and Massachusetts combined, exceeding the prediction from June. Nutrient run off from agricultural and other human […]

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NCCOS Prepares Toxin Sensor for Deployment in Puget Sound, WA

NCCOS scientist, Tina Mikulski, completed critical calibration of the domoic acid (DA) toxin sensor on an Environmental Sample Processor (ESP) platform located at NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC) in Seattle, Washington. This ESP (referred to as ‘ESPfriday’) will be deployed for the first time in Puget Sound beginning in early August and will generate autonomous, […]

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NCCOS Studies Effects of Dispersants and Weathered Oil

To study the impacts of dispersed oil on estuarine organisms and ecosystems, NCCOS scientists used tidal estuarine simulation units (called mesocosms) to mimic the conditions in an estuary affected by weathered crude oil. In the mesocosms, artificially weathered crude oil, with and without dispersants, was applied during three consecutive high tide events. The exposure phase lasted […]

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NCCOS Hypoxia Forecasts Prove Accurate

For over ten years NCCOS has developed and improved hypoxia (dead zone) forecasts similar to seasonal weather forecasts. The accuracy of these forecasts is proving to be quite good. Professor Don Scavia of the University of Michigan tracks the accuracy of the NCCOS-funded annual forecasts and finds the models work well in years without hurricanes or […]

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New Book Highlights NCCOS Work Aiding USVI Marine Park Management

NCCOS research was recently featured in a new book, Ocean Solutions, Earth Solutions, published by Environmental Systems Research Incorporated (ESRI). The NCCOS chapter, “Linking Landscape Condition Impacts to Coral Reef Ecosystem Composition for the East End of Saint Croix,” highlights the effects of terrestrial impacts to near-shore marine environments. The research specifically addresses land-based sources of […]

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NCCOS Aids West Coast Partners Responding to Extensive Harmful Algal Bloom

The National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) is providing $88,000 in emergency funds to aid Washington State to respond to an unprecedented West Coast harmful algal bloom (HAB) event. The funding supports collection and analysis of samples for the toxic algal bloom species Pseudo-nitzschia and domoic acid – the neurotoxin it produces – from beaches and offshore of […]

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Expanding Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring in Western Lake Erie

The NCCOS Phytoplankton Monitoring Network, established to monitor phytoplankton and harmful algal blooms (HABs), is partnering with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to expand into the Western Basin of Lake Erie.  Monitoring stations were selected with input from NOAA’s Ecological Forecasting Services to provide strategic sites to support the NCCOS Lake Erie Experimental Forecast. Recently, the […]

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Coral Reef Monitoring Continues Field Season in the U.S. Virgin Islands

NCCOS scientists, along with other federal and local partners, are diving on reefs surrounding St. Thomas and St. John from July 13-23, collecting data as part of the NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program’s National Coral Reef Monitoring Program (NCRMP). Earlier this summer, the team conducted similar dives off St. Croix. NCRMP provides a broader geographic context to supplement studies of […]

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