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Projects

A 2015 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

NCCOS scientist deploying caged oysters at a Severn River site in Chesapeake Bay. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 ...

A 2015–2016 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contamina...

One of the Gulf of Maine mussel beds sampled by the Mussel Watch team. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since ...

A 2017 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch team preparing to load supplies on NOAA small boat for sampling. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 ...

A 2018 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch Program collaborators from the Southern California Coastal Water Research Project (SCCWRP) collecting Mytilus mussels. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical ...

A 2019 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch Program site WBNA (Willapa Bay Nahcotta) in southern Washington. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 and in ...

A 2020 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch team members break apart clumps of oysters from Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, to prepare samples for analysis. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal ...

A 2021 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch collaborators collecting mussels from Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 and in recent decades ...

A 2022 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch team processing Dressenid mussel samples in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 and in ...

A 2023 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch team collecting oyster samples from Tampa Bay, Florida. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 and in recent ...

A 2024 Assessment of Metals, Legacy Contaminants, ...

Mussel Watch team collecting oyster samples from Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. Credit: NOAA. The Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation’s coastal waters for chemical contaminants since 1986 and in recent ...

News

NOAA Forecasts Above Average ‘Dead Zone’ for Gulf ...

The Mississippi River watershed, which encompasses over 40% of the continental U.S and crosses 22 state boundaries, is made up of farms (yellow), cities (red), and natural lands (green). Nitrogen ...

Scientists Test Improved Laser Scanning and Imagin...

NCCOS scientists Chris Taylor and Mike Bollinger deploy the AUV over the side of the research vessel using a crane. Credit: Erik Ebert/NOAA On April 20, 2010, an explosion occurred ...

NOAA’s Mussel Watch Program Expands Coastal Contam...

Members of the NCCOS Mussel Watch Program and the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Southeast Fisheries Science Center sample oysters near Corpus Christi, Texas, on January 26, 2024. Credit: NOAA. NOAA’s ...

Assessing Pollution in the Great Lakes Through Qua...

Scientists check on a cage of quagga mussels in the Milwaukee Estuary. Photo Credit: Ed Johnson (NOAA/NCCOS) When scientists from NOAA’s National Center for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) examined invasive ...

NCCOS and Partners Initiate Months-Long Surveillan...

Tina Mikulski calibrates domoic acid sensors on multiple 2G ESPs at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution-LOSOS laboratory prior to delivery to their Fall deployment. National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science ...

Studying the Effects of Marine Diesel Fuel on Mars...

Spartina alterniflora planted in a 12 gallon bucket with simulated low tide conditions. Marine-based oil spills are not an uncommon occurrence in the U.S. Worse still, they often occur near ...

Study Finds Oil Sheens Harm Larval Oysters

Oil sheen on surface of seawater. Credit: NOAA Office of Response and Restoration. New research co-led by NCCOS scientists shows that oil sheens on the surface of seawater can interfere ...

Products

Maps, Tools & Applications

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Data & Publications

A coupled physical-biological model of the Northern Gulf of Mexico shelf: model description, validation and analysis of phytoplankton variability

The Texas-Louisiana shelf in the Northern Gulf of Mexico receives large inputs of nutrients and freshwater from the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River system. The nutrients stimulate high rates of primary production in the river plume, which contributes to the development of a ...

A modeling study of physical controls on hypoxia generation in the northern Gulf of Mexico

The Louisiana shelf (LA shelf) in the northern Gulf of Mexico experiences hypoxic conditions every summer due to the combination of eutrophication and strong water column stratification. Here we use a three-dimensional circulation model coupled with a simple oxygen model ...

A Novel Antibody-Based Biomarker for Chronic Algal Toxin Exposure and Sub-Acute Neurotoxicity

The neurotoxic amino acid, domoic acid (DA), is naturally produced by marine phytoplankton and presents a significant threat to the health of marine mammals, seabirds and humans via transfer of the toxin through the foodweb. In humans, acute exposure causes ...

A Scenario and Forecast Model for Gulf of Mexico Hypoxic Area and Volume

For almost three decades, the relative size of the hypoxic region on the Louisiana-Texas continental shelf has drawn scientific and policy attention. During that time, both simple and complex models have been used to explore hypoxia dynamics and to provide ...

An Analysis of Chemical Contaminants in Sediments and Fish from Cocos Lagoon, Guam

As part of the NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program (CRCP) jurisdictional priority gathering, local agencies in Guam identified Cocos Lagoon as an area potentially impacted by land-based sources of pollution. The US Coast Guard operated a Long Range Navigation (LORAN) ...

An Assessment of Contaminants of Emerging Concern in Chesapeake Bay, MD and Charleston Harbor, SC

NOAA’s National Status and Trends (NS&T) Mussel Watch Program conducted regional pilot studies to assess the magnitude and distribution of contaminants of emerging concern (CEC) in shellfish and sediment from different coastal zones. In 2015, oyster and surficial sediment samples ...

An assessment of nutrients, sedimentation, and total suspended solids (TSS) in the St. Thomas East End Reserves (STEER)

This is the fifth report from a project to assess land-based sources of pollution (LSBPs) and their effects, and to characterize the biological community with the St. Thomas East End Reserves (Steer) in St. Thomas, USVI. Here we summarize the ...

An Assessment of Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) in Sediments and Bivalves of the U.S. Coastal Zone

This report, which represents the first national assessment of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in the U.S. coastal zone, shows that they are widely distributed. PBDE concentrations in both sediment and bivalve tissue correlate with human population density along the U.S ...

An integrated environmental assessment of the St. Thomas East End Reserves (STEER)

The St. Thomas East End Reserves, or STEER, is a collection of Marine Reserves and Wildlife Sanctuaries (MRWS) located on the southeastern end of the island of St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. With an area of approximately 9.6 km2 , ...

Analyses of the complete chloroplast genome sequences of two members of the Pelagophyceae: Aureococcus anophagefferens CCMP1984 and Aureoumbra lagunensis CCMP1507

Heterokont members of the Pelagophyceae form the massive brown tides that have continually plagued the coastal regions of the eastern U.S. seaboard and the Gulf of Mexico. To gain a better understanding of the photosynthetic competence that may be linked ...

General Pages

Advancing Pollution Science

NCCOS conducts national and long-term research and assessments to understand the effects of contaminants, nutrients, and hypoxia. Measuring contaminants in mussels and oysters, or the breadth of Gulf of Mexico's ...

Contaminants of Emerging Concern

NCCOS conducts research to evaluate and predict the effects of chemical contaminants and other environmental stressors on coastal ecosystems. Estuarine environments can serve as sinks for many chemical contaminants bound ...

Ecotoxicology

Since 1991, The Bioeffects Program has undertaken a series of regional environmental assessments designed to describe the magnitude and extent of toxic contaminant impacts in our nation's estuarine and coastal ...

Harmful Algal Blooms

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) occur when algae—simple photosynthetic organisms that live in the sea and freshwater—grow out of control while producing toxic or harmful effects on people, fish, shellfish, marine ...

Historic Chemical Contaminants

NCCOS delivers scientific products and services designed to inform and improve the management of chemical contaminants in the coastal zone. Contaminants of concern for coastal ecosystems include legacy compounds (e.g ...

Mussel Watch

NOAA's National Mussel Watch Program monitors the status and spatial and temporal trends of chemical contaminants and biological stressors in the nation’s coastal waters. The Mussel Watch Program is the ...

Oil Spills

Contaminants of Emerging ConcernNCCOS conducts research to evaluate and predict the effects of chemical contaminants and other environmental stressors on coastal ecosystems. Estuarine environments can serve as sinks for many ...

Pollution

Advancing Pollution ScienceContaminants and nutrients pollute the marine and coastal environment, causing acute or long-term impacts to ecosystems, humans, and animals—from shellfish to pets. NCCOS provides the science to help ...

NOAA Internship Opportunities

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NCCOS delivers ecosystem science solutions for stewardship of the nation’s ocean and coastal resources to sustain thriving coastal communities and economies.

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