State-of-the-Science for Dispersant Use (DDO) in Arctic Waters

Background on the State-of-the-Science for Dispersant Use (DDO) in Arctic Waters Initiative:

Chemical dispersants were employed on an unprecedented scale during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and could be a response option should a large spill occur in Arctic waters. One of the outcomes of an Arctic oil spill drill for senior federal agency leadership identified the need for a definitive evaluation of the state-of-science of dispersants and dispersed oil (DDO), particularly as it applies to Arctic waters.

To address this need, the Coastal Response Research Center (CRRC) coordinated a discussion among scientists with dispersant research expertise, as well as those with Arctic expertise, to determine the state-of-science (knowns and uncertainties) regarding DDO, as it applies to Arctic waters.  Separate panels of scientists were convened to focus on each of the following topics concerning DDO:                                                                                  

  1. Efficacy and Effectiveness;
  2. Physical Transport and Chemical Behavior;
  3. Degradation and Fate;
  4. Eco-Toxicity and Sublethal Impacts; and 
  5. Public Health and Food Safety.

The outcomes of the initiative include:

  • CRRC developed a database of research/reference documents on DDO for each topic that were published between June 2008 and December 31, 2015. Links to each specific topic database are listed below. (The CRRC database includes documents published after the LUMCON database (https://lumcon.edu/library/) [scroll down to find dispersants] which has an end date of June 2008.)
  • Based on the literature, the scientists made statements for each topic delineating what is known about the state-of-science regarding DDO as it applies to Arctic waters.
  • The scientists also made statements for each topic delineating the uncertainties about the state-of-science regarding DDO as it applies to Arctic waters.

Interesting facts about this initiative:

~79 scientists across 5 panels, review of over 3,000 papers, distribution to the research center's list of 3,500 with even broader outlets, 232 hours of post-workshop  technical calls with the scientific panels, producing over 100 pages of knowns and uncertainties across the 5 topic areas. This presentation offers additional information and overview about this project>>

Topic 1: Efficacy and Effectiveness

FINAL DOCUMENT: State-of-the-Science of knowns and uncertainties about the Efficacy and Effectiveness of dispersants and dispersed oil as it applies to their use in Arctic waters.

CRRC Database for Efficacy and Effectiveness here>>.  (updated July 2016) [Note: this database continues to be updated as publications are forwarded to CRRC.  This is not a complete listing of dispersant-related topics.  However, this is the database (up to December 2015) that the Panel reviewed and some of which were cited in the document.]

Topic 2: Physical Transport and Chemical Behavior

FINAL DOCUMENT: State-of-the-Science of knowns and uncertainties about the Physical Transport and Chemical Behavior of dispersants and dispersed oil as it applies to their use in Arctic Waters.

CRRC Database for Physical Transport and Chemical Behavior here>>.(updated July 2016) [Note: this database continues to be updated as publications are forwarded to CRRC.  This is not a complete listing of dispersant-related topics.  However, this is the database (up to December 2015) that the Panel reviewed and some of which were cited in the document.]

Topic 3: Degradation and Fate

FINAL DOCUMENT: State-of-the-Science of knowns and uncertainties about the Degradation and Fate of dispersants and dispersed oil as it applies to their use in Arctic Waters.

CRRC Database for Degradation and Fate here>>. (updated July 2016) [Note: this database continues to be updated as publications are forwarded to CRRC.  This is not a complete listing of dispersant-related topics.  However, this is the database (up to December 2015) that the Panel reviewed and some of which were cited in the document.]

Topic 4: Eco-Toxicity and Sublethal Impacts

FINAL DOCUMENT: State-of-the-Science of knowns and uncertainties about the Eco-Toxicity and Sublethal Impacts of dispersants and dispersed oil as it applies to their use in the Arctic.

CRRC Database of Publications for Eco-Toxicity and Sublethal Impacts here>>.  [Note: this database continues to be updated as publications are forwarded to CRRC.  This is not a complete listing of dispersant-related topics.  However, this is the database (up to December 2015) that the Panel reviewed and some of which were cited in the document.]

Topic 5: Public Health and Food Safety

FINAL DOCUMENT: State-of-the-Science of knowns and uncertainties about the Public Health and Food Safety of dispersants and dispersed oil as it applies to their use in the Arctic.

CRRC Database of Publications for Public Health and Food Safety here>> [Note: this database continues to be updated as publications are forwarded to CRRC.  This is not a complete listing of dispersant-related topics.  However, this is the database (up to December 2015) that the Panel reviewed and some of which were cited in the document.]

 

 

Questions? Contact Kathy Mandsager