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December 1, 2015

The Spill

Marine Technology Meets the Gulf Oil Disaster

Florida researchers are monitoring the long-term dynamics of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster

Mark R. Howard | 8/1/2010

Florida's Academic Team

> Ian MacDonald, a professor in the Department of Oceanography at FSU, is an expert on natural releases of oil, methane and other hydrocarbons from the Gulf seabed.

Ian Macdonald
Ian Macdonald
MacDonald, who uses data from both submersibles and satellites in his research, was among the first to dispute BP's estimates for how much oil was flowing into the Gulf. MacDonald is a key leader in establishing an "Oil Spill Academic Task Force" that has combined the spill-related research being conducted by all Florida universities. The group posts information online at

Ian Macdonald
Ian Macdonald
> FSU marine biologist David L. Kimbro leads a group investigating the health and future of the oyster reefs in estuaries along Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico shorelines. The study is expected to help quantify environmental injury caused by the oil spill. It's also expected to net information on the impact of oyster reef destruction on diet composition of larger species ("In the Grass, On the Reef,''

The Business Response

> The Florida Small Business Development Center Network is heading an effort to help small businesses affected by the spill stay afloat, using funds provided through the state's Emergency Bridge Loan Program. Initial Bridge Loan Review committees established for Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa and Walton counties in just the first two weeks after the spill approved 21 applications for disaster loans totaling $525,000. Loans up to $25,000 are available and are interest-free and payment-free for one year.

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