Atlantic Ocean News

US Approves Plan to Open Atlantic to Oil Reserve Surveys

worried the plan will harm marine life and open the door to offshore drilling. First outlined by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in February, the plan lays out the mitigation measures companies would be required to undertake before conducting seismic testing to gauge the oil reserves in the Atlantic Ocean. "We are taking every step we think is reasonable to take to try and put those protections in place, while still allowing surveys to occur," Acting BOEM Director Walter Cruickshank said on a press call. BOEM emphasized that the plan does not authorize any particular seismic surveys

US, Canada, EU, Sign Atlantic Ocean Research Accord

The recently signed "Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Cooperation" concerns research into the workings of the Atlantic Ocean and its interaction with the Arctic. The alliance will build on existing bilateral cooperation agreements and projects with the aim of developing and advancing a shared vision for the Atlantic. For the European Union, the Statement was signed by European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science Máire Geoghegan-Quinn and European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Maria Damanaki. For the United States the Statement was signed by Dr

US Forecaster Predicts Below-average Atlantic Hurricane Season

The Atlantic Ocean will see a below-average number of hurricanes this season due to cooler seas and a strong El Niño effect, the U.S. government weather forecaster announced on Wednesday.   The forecast calls for six to 11 tropical storms this year, with three to six reaching hurricane status, including possibly two major hurricanes with winds reaching at least 111 miles-per-hour (178 kph), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said at a press conference in New Orleans.     (Reporting by David Adams; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)

Petrobras: Pipeline Leaked 600 Liters of Crude, Some in Ocean

An oil pipeline along Brazil's coast near Rio de Janeiro leaked 600 liters (3.77 barrels) of oil into nearby water courses with about 50 liters leaching into the Atlantic Ocean, state-run oil company Petrobras said on Friday.   Teams with vacuum equipment, floating oil barriers, absorbent materials, boats and trucks are on the scene trying to clean up the spill and prevent it from spreading, Petroleo Brasileiro SA, as the company is formally known, said in a statement.     (Reporting by Jeb Blount; Editing by Diane Craft)

L-R: Kirk Regular, Fisheries & Marine Institute of Memorial University, Tommy Furey, Dr Peter Heffernan, Fabio Sacchetti, Marine Institute, Marcos Miguel Páscoa Parreira Rosa, Instituto Portugues do Mar e da Atmosfera (IPMA). Photo: Marine Institute

Marine Institute Maps Atlantic Sea Bed

of scientists on board the State’s research ship, the MV Celtic Explorer.   It followed the route taken by ships dropping the first transatlantic telecommunications cable between Ireland and Newfoundland in Canada in 1857.   The project is one of the first to be carried out by the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance, set up two years ago, on foot of the signing of the Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Cooperation.   There were five attempts to lay the first communications link between Europe and the US. However, the ships taking part had little of the crucial "hydrographic

Arctic Monitoring Buoy: Photo credit NOAA

Arctic Ocean More Acidic? NOAA Deploys First Monitoring Buoy

NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in partnership with the Marine Research Institute in Iceland has deployed the first high-latitude ocean acidification monitoring buoy in the Atlantic Ocean. The moored buoy is the first of its kind to be deployed north of the Arctic circle in a region where very little is known about how carbon dioxide (CO2) is entering the ocean environment. The buoy, deployed north of Iceland, is equipped with a MAPCO2 monitoring system designed at PMEL that measures CO2 concentrations of the surface water and atmosphere every 90 minutes. The mooring

The Greenland Ice Sheet is a 1.7 million-square-kilometer, 2-mile thick layer of ice that covers Greenland. (Photo courtesy of Fiamma Straneo, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

A Look at Greenland's Changing Climate

Greenland Ice Sheet is a 1.7 million-square-kilometer, 2-mile thick layer of ice that covers Greenland. At its edge, glaciers that drain the ice sheet plunge into coastal fjords that are over 600 meters deep – thus exposing the ice sheet edges to contact with the ocean. The waters of the North Atlantic Ocean, which surround southern Greenland, are presently the warmest they have been in the past 100 years. This warming is due to natural climate variability and human induced climate change, and climate models project that it will keep getting warmer. Therefore, it is important to understand if the

The newest research ship Amber was a part of the Northern Fleet

Northern Fleet Adds Research Vessel

  The latest oceanographic research vessel "Yantar" has arrived at the base of the Northern Fleet in Murmansk region. This was announced by Head of Press Service of the Federation Council Vadim Serga. "The crew has completed the transition from the Atlantic Ocean to the Kola Bay" - quoted by TASS Sergey. In May of this year, "Amber" was raised by St. Andrew's flag. This was followed by testing of the equipment and facilities the ship in the deep Atlantic. The technical capabilities of "Amber" will help raise hydrographic and research activities of

WOC Co-organizing International Workshop

an international workshop to advance ocean industry data collecting and sharing. The event will set the stage for an initial Canadian Atlantic pilot project on ocean observations by industry, in support of Canada’s commitment to trans-Atlantic research under the “Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Cooperation,” with potential for future expansion to the Pacific and Arctic Oceans. The three-day workshop (Montreal, May 27-29, 2014) will convene industry, science and government representatives to: a) Develop a shared understanding of the need and opportunity for industry data collection

Increases in anthropogenic CO2 in the Atlantic Ocean between 2003 and 2014. (Image: UM)

N. Atlantic Ocean CO2 Storage Doubled Over Decade

shells and exoskeletons. The researchers hope to return in another 10 years to determine if the increase in carbon uptake continues, or if, as many fear, it will decrease as a result of slowing thermohaline circulation. The study, titled “Rapid Anthropogenic Changes in CO2 and pH in the Atlantic Ocean: 2003-2014” was published in the journal Global Biogeochemical Cycles. The study’s authors include: Woosley and Frank J. Millero of the UM Rosenstiel School; and Rik Wanninkhof of NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory. The study was funded by the National

US Denies Atlantic Seismic G&G Permits

The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has denied six pending geophysical and geological (G&G) permit applications to conduct airgun seismic surveys in the Mid- and South Atlantic Planning Areas of the Atlantic Ocean.    In announcing its decision BOEM cited a number of factors, including a diminished need for additional seismic survey information because the Atlantic Program Area has been removed from the 2017-2022 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program.      “In the present circumstances and guided by an abundance of caution, we believe

Pelagic longline vessel Captain Scott Drabinowicz and crew preparing to deploy a tag from the deck of the FV Eagle Eye II.

Tuna Study Uses New Tracking Methods

A first-of-its-kind study of bigeye tuna movements in the northwestern Atlantic Ocean led by Molly Lutcavage, director of the Large Pelagics Research Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, found among other things that these fish cover a wide geographical range with pronounced north-south movements from Georges Bank to the Brazilian shelf, and they favor a high-use area off Cape Hatteras southwest of Bermuda for foraging. This NOAA-funded research, which used a new approach to study one of the most important commercial tuna species in the Atlantic, provides the longest available fishery-i

Randall Luthi (Photo: NOIA)

Op/Ed: A Nail in the Coffin for US Offshore Exploration

exploration in the Atlantic. Not only does this decision conflict with BOEM’s own scientific conclusion that seismic surveys are environmentally safe, it is self-fulfilling rhetoric, basing its reasoning on President Obama’s recent withdrawal of 3.8 million acres in the north and mid-Atlantic Ocean.    This decision continues the Obama administration’s dismissal of scientifically-backed offshore policies and ignores the fact that seismic and other geophysical surveys have been safely conducted offshore in the U.S. and around the world for more than 50 years. What&rsquo

Photo: NOAA

Arctic Seas a 'Dead End' for Floating Plastic

The Arctic is a dead end for floating plastic waste dumped in the Atlantic Ocean off Europe and the United States and swept north by ocean currents to a polar graveyard, scientists said on Wednesday.   Levels of plastic found east of Greenland and in the Barents Sea off Norway and Russia were far higher than expected for the sparsely populated regions, according to the report showing how man-made pollution extends even to remote parts of the globe.   "The northeastern Atlantic sector of the Arctic Ocean appeared as a dead end for the surface transport of plastic pollution," the

Howard Woodcock, Chief Executive, Bibby Offshore

Bibby Offshore wins Shell Contract

; The company has also collaborated with a third party operator who will carry out trenching operations after the initial workscope is complete.     In early 2016, Bibby Offshore provided construction and inspection services for Shell on assets in the Corrib Natural Gas field in the North Atlantic Ocean, successfully completing two significant contracts. 

Distant view of detached El Faro navigation bridge (Photo: NTSB)

NTSB Releases El Faro Images & Video

of NTSB public docket on investigation into the sinking of U.S. cargo ship El Faro. Underwater video and images of the sunken cargo ship EL Faro have been released by the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) as part of its continuing investigation into the vessel’s sinking in the Atlantic Ocean in October. The docket opened by NTSB includes nine underwater images of El Faro wreckage on the seafloor, as well as more than 47 minutes of video from CURV-21, the remotely operated vehicle used to document the wreckage and debris field. Excerpts from that video are available on the NTSB&rsquo

Image: TDI-Brooks International

Deepwater Atlantic Habitats Study Commissioned

 TDI-Brooks International, Inc. said it has been awarded an interagency five year, multimillion dollar study focusing on the exploration and investigation of deepwater biological communities located in U.S. federal waters of the northwest Atlantic Ocean, potentially including offshore Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.   The study, entitled “Deepwater Atlantic Habitats II: Continued Atlantic Research and Exploration in Deepwater Ecosystems with Focus on Coral, Canyon and Seep Communities,” is being funded by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM)

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