Minor oil spills are often bigger than reported: GMC Member SkyTruth contributes to study of chronic oil spills

Chronic oil slick at a Taylor Energy platform 23051, damaged by Hurricane Ivan in 2004. BILLY DUGGER/ONWINGSOFCARE.ORG

SkyTruth, Shepherdstown, WV – In collaboration with Gulf Monitoring Consortium member SkyTruth, Florida State University recently presented to the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill and Ecosystem Science Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana the findings of a study that found oil spills in the Gulf are often under-estimated. Samira Daneshgar Asl, a FSU graduate student, analysed an extensive set of radar satellite images of detected oil slicks, and found that spills caused by human activity were consistently 13 times larger than reported to National Response Center, a federal repository operated by the Coast Guard for documenting pollution incidents. This study coincides with conclusions drawn in the GMC’s first 6-Month report – read more about the key findings of that report here.

The preliminary findings of the study were covered by the Nature news blog: