Dispersants Forum at Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Science Conference

Center for Spills in the Environment logo Center for Spills and Environmental Hazards

Dispersants Forum at Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Science Conference

Sunday, January 26, 2014
Mobile, AL

   The Center for Spills in the Environment produced a report of this workshopHere>>

Dispersants: what do we know and what do we need to learn, in order to better inform decisions about their use?

The Center for Spills in the Environment (CSE) from the University of New Hampshire (UNH) facilitated a forum on dispersants and their use during oil spills.  The forum began with overview presentations on the nature of dispersants, how they work, information on actual deployments, as well as what is known about their impacts (e.g., acute/chronic toxicity).  Two panels will discuss what has been learned about dispersants and their use, what research is on-going, and how we can better inform decisions about future deployment.  The panels included representatives of governmental agencies, industry, NGOs and academics.


  • Response, Effects and Damage Assessment (associated with dispersants and dispersed oil);
  • Recovery and Restoration (how recovery and restoration is different if dispersants are used during a response); and
  • Lessons Learned from DWH about Dispersants Use; Questions that remain; New frontiers with respoect to dispersant use.

Introduction presentation (Nancy Kinner, Director, Center for Spills in the Environment)

Plenary: Dispersants & Their Use in Spill Response (Charlie Henry, NOAA)

Plenary - Effects & Damage Assessment and Recovery & Restoration (Ron Tjeerdema, University of California, Davis)

Response Panel:

Michael Sams, USCG

Charlie Henry, NOAA

Tom Coolbaugh, ExxonMobil

Richard Knudsen, State of Florida

Vijay John, CMEDS, Tulane University

Effects/Impacts Panel:

Robert Dickey, University of Texas

Chris Robbins, Ocean Conservancy

Tom Coolbaugh, ExxonMobil

Ed Buskey, DROPPS, University of Texas

James Fabisiak, University of Pittsburgh