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Projects

AquaSpace – An Ecosystem Approach to Making Space ...

Aquaculture is a large and growing segment of seafood production because capture fisheries production continues to decline. A major challenge to the expansion of marine aquaculture in most nations is ...

Biological Vulnerability to Hypoxia from Climate W...

This project will provide critical information and predictive tools to coastal managers for understanding how species will respond to changing hypoxia conditions from ongoing and projected warming in the Gulf ...

Causes and Consequences of Hypoxic Events in Low-i...

We are investigating the processes that lead to hypoxia in Southern California’s lagoons, and identifying its ecological impacts. These small estuaries, which have tidal inlets that can close to the ...

Effects of Hypoxia and Warming on Zooplankton in C...

Arcatia tonsa is the dominant copepod in Chesapeake Bay and a critical food source for many fisheries species and a link between primary producers (phytoplankton) and upper trophic levels. Size ...

Eutrophication and Oyster Aquaculture in the Patux...

Eutrophication is the overabundance of nutrients in a body of water that results in harmful algal blooms, fish kills, and in some cases ecosystem collapse. We are investigating the feasibility ...

Eutrophication and Oyster Aquaculture in the Potom...

Eutrophication is the overabundance of nutrients in a body of water that results in harmful algal blooms, which can lead to depletion of dissolved oxygen and loss of fish and ...

Florida Regional Ecosystem Stressors Collaborative...

We are investigating the current and future impacts of five key stressors–ocean acidification, hypoxia, harmful algal blooms, warming, and eutrophication–on South Florida’s coastal ecosystems. Results will provide actionable information for ...

Forecasting the Causes, Consequences, and Potentia...

In recent years, the central basin of Lake Erie has experienced low-oxygen conditions, despite measures taken by surrounding states and provinces to reduce nutrient inputs. We studied the factors that ...

How Will Changing Temperature and Oxygen Condition...

We are supporting the application of coastal ocean models to determine the vulnerability of important species to changing temperature and oxygen in the California Current. This will enable coastal managers ...
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News

NCCOS-Supported Research Transitioning to Operatio...

Dungeness crab is Oregon’s most valuable single-species fishery. Photo Credit: Oregon Sea Grant. U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) has awarded Oregon State University with an ocean technology transition grant ...

Decision Support Tool Visualizing Effects of Nutri...

The NCCOS Northern Gulf of Mexico Ecosystems and Hypoxia Assessment Program (NGOMEX) has produced various ecosystem models that predict the effects of hypoxia on living marine resources.  Although such models ...

Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia Task Force Convenes Annual ...

The Mississippi River Gulf of Mexico Watershed Nutrient Task Force, otherwise known as the Hypoxia Task Force (HTF), held its 38th annual meeting which highlighted ongoing efforts by HTF members to improve ...

NCCOS Awards $14.1M for Harmful Algal Bloom and Hy...

A beach on Saint Martin in the Caribbean (east of Puerto Rico) covered in Sargassum seaweed. Credit: NOAA AOML NCCOS is announcing $14.1 million in funding for harmful algal bloom ...

Below Average Summer 2023 ‘Dead Zone’ Measured in ...

NCCOS-supported scientists have determined that this year’s Gulf of Mexico “dead zone” — an area of low oxygen that can kill fish and marine life — is approximately 3,058 square ...

NOAA Forecasts Smaller than Average ‘Dead Zone’ fo...

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 ...

San Diego Estuaries Research Symposium Highlights ...

On February 7, 2023, NCCOS-supported researchers under the Coastal Hypoxia Research Program presented their findings at the virtual San Diego Estuaries Research Symposium. The symposium was designed to bring together ...

New Funding to Reduce Nutrient Pollution Reviewed ...

The Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia Task Force held its 37th annual meeting in December to review ongoing actions to improve water quality in the Mississippi River basin and to discuss ...

New Short Film on Understanding Hypoxia: Dead Zone...

With funding from NCCOS, a short film, "Understanding Hypoxia: Dead Zones on the Pacific Coast", was produced by Oregon State Productions, a documentary film team at Oregon State University. The ...

Products

Maps, Tools & Applications

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Data & Publications

A Reduced Complexity, Hybrid Empirical-Mechanistic Model of Eutrophication and Hypoxia in Shallow Marine Ecosystems

Numerical simulation models have a long history as research tools for the study of coastal marine ecosystems, and are increasingly being used to inform management, particularly related to nutrient-fueled eutrophication. Demand for modeling assessments is rapidly increasing, and managers need ...

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 ecosystem services assessment using bioextraction technologies for removal of nitrogen and other substances in Long Island Sound and the Great Bay/Piscataqua Region Estuaries

A State-Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Nutrient Innovations Task Group concluded in a 2009 report (State -- EPA Nutrient Innovations Task Group, 2009) that 'continuing the status quo at the national, state, and local levels and relying upon our current practices ...

Assessing biophysical controls on Gulf of Mexico hypoxia through probabilistic modeling

A mechanistic model was developed to predict midsummer bottom-water dissolved oxygen (BWDO) concentration and hypoxic area on the Louisiana shelf of the northern Gulf of Mexico, USA (1985–2011). Because of its parsimonious formulation, the model possesses many of the benefits ...

Assessment of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α mRNA expression in mantis shrimp as a biomarker of environmental hypoxia exposure

Efforts to assess the ecological impacts of the marked increase in coastal hypoxia worldwide have been hampered by a lack of biomarkers of hypoxia exposure in marine benthic organisms. Here, we show that hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) transcript levels in the ...

Carbon Dynamics on the Louisiana Continental Shelf and Cross-Shelf Feeding of Hypoxia

Large-scale hypoxia regularly develops during the summer on the Louisiana continental shelf. Traditionally, hypoxia has been linked to the vast winter and spring nutrient inputs from the Mississippi River and its distributary, the Atchafalaya River. However, recent studies indicate that ...

Changes in Mississippi River Water Quality this Century: Implications for Coastal Food Webs

In this article, we quantify some important changes in water quality for the Lower Mississippi River for this century and then suggest their causes and possible impact ...

Characterization of three IGFBPs in Atlantic croaker and their regulation during hypoxic stress: potential mechanisms of their upregulation by hypoxia

Insulin-like growth factor-binding proteins (IGFBPs) play important roles in downregulating IGF activity and growth and development in vertebrates under hypoxic stress. However, the mechanisms of hypoxia regulation of IGFBPs in teleost fishes are unknown. The involvement of reactive oxygen species ...

Coastal eutrophication near the Mississippi river delta

Changes in delivery of river-borne nutrients such as dissolved phosphate, nitrate and silicate, owing to land-use changes and anthropogenic emissions, are known to result in eutrophication1— enhanced phytoplankton blooms—and more severe hypoxic events2–1 in many enclosed bays and seas. Although ...

Council Monitoring and Assessment Program (CMAP) Compilation of Existing Habitat and Water Quality Monitoring, and Mapping Assessments for the Gulf of Mexico Region

The Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act (RESTORE Act) was signed into law on July 6, 2012. The RESTORE Act calls for a regional approach to restoring the long-term health of ...

General Pages

Dead Zone

Since its inception in 1990, the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science has provided the research foundation upon which management of the "dead zone" in the Gulf of Mexico is ...

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 ...

Hypoxia

Hypoxia occurs when the amount of oxygen in water becomes too low to support most aquatic life (typically below 2 mg/L). Hypoxia is an expanding global problem and a symptom ...

NGOMEX

The northern portion of the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem, a region containing almost half of the nation's coastal wetlands and supporting commercial fisheries generating $1 billion annually, has undergone profound ...

Targeted Efforts to Support Nutrient Management

NCCOS supports observations and monitoring for variables that are important to modeling hypoxia in time and space. These models are then used to inform key organizations working to reduce the ...

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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