BP Deepwater Horizon Disaster (03:41)
In April 2010, an explosion kills 11 people and changes the lives of millions; oil reaches the Louisiana coast four weeks later. Experts spray dispersants and cap the well 87 days later. Experts develop a research community in the Gulf of Mexico.
Dispatch #1: The Journey Begins (01:54)
Six years after the Deepwater Horizon accident, scientists divide into two teams and collect fish and soil samples near the oil spill. Gulf Coast residents want more information about the environmental impact. (Credits)
Dispatch #2: What's At Stake (02:54)
Life along the Gulf Coast is directly linked to the rhythms of the sea. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill changes the lives of fishermen, shrimpers, and crabbers. Livelihoods and the future of the biologically fertile region are at stake.
Dispatch #3: The Mud and Blood Cruise (02:28)
Steve Murawski's research team prepares to catch fish using the long-line technique. They hope to catch a representative sample of the fish community so they can track their health and recovery.
Dispatch #4: It Gets Complicated (04:49)
Will Patterson and Joe Tarnecki use a multi-sensor ROV to collect data on the impact of oil and dispersants on natural and artificial reef habitats. They discuss growth rates and the emergence of lionfish.
Dispatch #5: This is Fishery Science (04:32)
Murawski's team catches several red snapper and collects various samples to better understand their present day exposure to oil and long-term accumulation. They also gather data on sharks for other scientists.
Dispatch #6: Failing Hearts (07:39)
Scientists study the genetic impact of oil on fish. They fish for Mahi-Mahi with the goal of replenishing their breeding stock. The scientists compare tissue samples from wild fish and captivity bred fish and test their endurance.
Dispatch #7: Lessons From the Past (03:45)
Cordova, Alaska is one of the top ten U.S. fishing ports until the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster. Four years later, the herring fishery collapses; scientists discuss latent effects.
Dispatch #8: Where Did the Oil Go? (03:53)
The Gulf of Mexico remains under stress from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Matt Damon presents estimations of what happened to the 200 million gallons of oil. Scientists study how dispersants and the ocean interact.
Dispatch #9: Ginger Snap Cookies (03:41)
Approximately 47 million gallons from the Deepwater Horizon spill remain in the water or reach land. Chris Reddy collects oiled samples from a beach. He and Ryan Rodgers study the chemistry of the oil; the sun and bacteria breakdown oil molecules.
Dispatch #10: Holy Cow Moments (05:50)
Mandy Joye and her team study the environment where oil seeps naturally occur in the Gulf of Mexico. Joye descends over 5,000 feet and witnesses the impact of the Deepwater Horizon spill on coral and filter feeders.
Dispatch #11: Tracking Contamination (05:42)
Dave Hollander and his team collect sediment samples from the sea floor to help track the vectors of oil contamination. At the University of South Florida, scientists analyze the core samples and red snapper data.
Dispatch #12: Final Thoughts (02:48)
Fishermen and scientists consider the effects of the Deepwater Horizon spill and reflect on the potential impact of future spills. The search for oil is a major economic issue.
Credits: Dispatches from the Gulf, Episode 1 (01:45)
Credits: Dispatches from the Gulf, Episode 1
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