Oil Spills

Oil Spills News -- ScienceDaily Latest research news on oil spills, oil spill clean-up, designing to avoid oil spills and more.

  • Orange, tea tree and eucalyptus oils sweeten diesel fumes
    on June 15, 2018 at 10:55 pm

    Waste oil from orange, tea tree and eucalyptus essential oil production mixed with diesel provides a sweet-smelling biofuel blend with comparable performance to diesel-only fuel. […]

  • Minimising the impacts of palm oil plantations
    on May 29, 2018 at 5:21 pm

    With palm oil production exploding around the world, a new study of a leading producer has found ways to make the process easier on the environment. […]

  • Low-cost membrane cleans up light and heavy oils in a single step
    on May 25, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    Researchers have developed a low-cost membrane that effectively separates oil and water on demand -- potentially paving the way for faster cleanups of oil spills and improved treatment of industrial wastewater in the future. […]

  • Comprehensive estimate of 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill
    on April 30, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    Researchers announce that optical remote sensing observations may provide close estimates of relative oil thickness/volume for large oil slicks in the ocean captured by satellites. […]

  • Sunlight reduces effectiveness of dispersants used in oil spills
    on April 25, 2018 at 1:38 pm

    Two new studies have shown that sunlight transforms oil spills on the ocean surface more significantly and quickly than previously thought. The phenomenon considerably limits the effectiveness of chemical dispersants, which are designed to break up floating oil and reduce the amount of oil that reaches coastlines. […]

  • An oil-eating bacterium that can help clean up pollution and spills
    on April 9, 2018 at 6:47 pm

    Oil spills occur on a regular basis, leading to messy decontamination challenges. But however widespread and serious the damage may be, the solution could be microscopic -- Alcanivorax borkumensis -- a bacterium that feeds on hydrocarbons. A research team shows the effectiveness of enzymes produced by the bacterium in degrading petroleum products in soil and water. Their results offer hope for a simple, effective, and eco-friendly method of decontaminating water and soil at oil sites. […]

  • Treating oily water: Efficiency exceeds requirements 10 times
    on March 23, 2018 at 1:08 pm

    Wastewater cleaning technology efficiently cleans water from oil products leaving it virtually pollution-free (the concentration of oil discharge in treated water is about 0.2 mg/L). Given the efficiency, the technology is much cheaper than the alternatives currently known in the market. […]

  • What plants can teach us about oil spill clean-up, microfluidics
    on March 20, 2018 at 6:13 pm

    For years, scientists have been inspired by nature to innovate solutions to tricky problems, even oil spills -- manmade disasters with devastating environmental and economic consequences. A new study takes a cue from leaf structure to fabricate material that can separate oil and water, which could lead to safer and more efficient oil spill clean-up methods. […]

  • Report identifies options for lowering risk of failure of undersea bolts on offshore oil rigs
    on March 9, 2018 at 3:58 pm

    A new report identifies strategies for improving the reliability of bolts used in offshore oil and gas drilling rigs, thereby reducing the risk that a bolt failure could cause a spill of oil, drilling fluids, or natural gas into the environment. […]

  • Oil-eating microbes are challenged in the Arctic
    on February 20, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    Bacteria play a major role in cleaning up oil spills and mitigating its environmental impacts. In a new paper, researchers examine the major limiting factors for microbial degradation in Arctic environments. […]

  • UK fracking industry would need strict controls to minimize spill risk
    on February 15, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    Strict controls would be 'a necessity' to minimize the risk of spills and leaks from any future UK shale gas industry, according to new research. […]

  • Sanchi oil spill contamination could take three months to reach mainland
    on January 13, 2018 at 2:37 pm

    Water contaminated by the oil currently leaking into the ocean from the Sanchi tanker collision is likely to take at least three months to reach land, and if it does the Korean coast is the most likely location. However, the oil's fate is highly uncertain, as it may burn, evaporate, or mix into the surface ocean and contaminate the environment for an extended duration. […]

  • Geopolitical risks to US oil supply lowest since the early 1970s
    on January 5, 2018 at 6:52 pm

    The geopolitical risks to the United States' oil supply are the lowest since the early 1970s, due to fracking, climate action and a more diverse global supply, according to a new paper. America's energy prosperity contrasts with a more fraught period for energy-exporting countries where geopolitical challenges have been compounded by fiscal stress and rising domestic energy demand, the authors said. […]

  • New report calls for research to better understand, predict Gulf of Mexico's loop current system
    on January 3, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    A new report calls for an international, multi-institutional comprehensive campaign of research, observation, and analysis activities that would help improve understanding and prediction of the Gulf of Mexico's Loop Current System (LCS). The position, strength, and structure of the LCS -- the dominant ocean circulation feature in the Gulf -- has major implications for oil and gas operations, hurricane intensity, coastal ecosystems, oil spill response, the fishing industry, tourism, and the region's economy. […]

  • Re-assessing Alaska's energy frontier
    on December 23, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    The new USGS assessment estimates 8.7 billion barrels of oil and 25 trillion cubic feet of natural gas resources. […]

  • Diesel vehicles in oil sands operations contribute to regional pollution
    on December 6, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    Wildfires, cigarette smoking and vehicles all emit a potentially harmful compound called isocyanic acid. The substance has been linked to several health conditions, including heart disease and cataracts. Scientists investigating sources of the compound have now identified off-road diesel vehicles in oil sands production in Alberta, Canada, as a major contributor to regional levels of the pollutant. […]

  • Even modest oil exposure can harm coastal and marine birds
    on October 12, 2017 at 7:18 pm

    Many birds and other wildlife die following an oil spill, but there are also other potential long-terms effects of oil exposure on animals. […]

  • The costs of transporting petroleum products by pipelines and rail
    on October 10, 2017 at 7:29 pm

    While the policy debate surrounding crude oil transportation costs has emphasized accidents and spills, a new study indicates the debate is overlooking a far more serious external cost -- air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. […]

  • European sea bass show chronic impairment after exposure to crude oil
    on October 3, 2017 at 1:46 pm

    We may be underestimating the long-term impact of oil spills on fish, particularly their ability to tolerate low oxygen environments, according to research. […]

  • Gulf Spill oil dispersants associated with health symptoms in cleanup workers
    on September 19, 2017 at 8:03 pm

    Workers who were likely exposed to dispersants while cleaning up the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill experienced a range of health symptoms including cough and wheeze, and skin and eye irritation. […]

  • UK oil and gas reserves may last only a decade, study suggests
    on September 19, 2017 at 4:31 pm

    The UK has low oil and gas resources and limited prospects for fracking, according to a new analysis by scientists, who recommend a shift towards greater use of renewable, clean energy. […]

  • Dispersants improved air quality for responders at Deepwater Horizon
    on August 28, 2017 at 8:41 pm

    A recent study adds a new dimension to the controversial decision to inject large amounts of chemical dispersants immediately above the crippled oil well at the seafloor during the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010. […]

  • Oil and gas wells as a strong source of greenhouse gases
    on August 28, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    Boreholes in the North Sea could constitute a significantly more important source of methane, a strong greenhouse gas, than previously thought. Large amounts of methane are released from the sediments surrounding boreholes, probably over long periods of time. […]

  • Cheaper, greener biofuels processing catalyst
    on August 25, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    Fuels that are produced from nonpetroleum-based biological sources may become greener and more affordable, thanks to new research that examines the use of a processing catalyst made from palladium metal and bacteria. […]

  • Enhanced oil recovery method developed
    on July 19, 2017 at 2:05 pm

    A new class of materials which are suitable agents for oil displacing in enhanced oil recovery have been developed. […]

  • Oil impairs ability of coral reef fish to find homes and evade predators
    on July 17, 2017 at 3:05 pm

    Just as one too many cocktails can lead a person to make bad choices, a few drops of oil can cause coral reef fish to make poor decisions. Oil impacts the higher-order thinking of coral reef fish in a way that could prove dangerous for them -- and for the coral reefs where they make their home. […]

  • Oil spill impacts may perturb entire food webs
    on July 10, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    Oil spills not only have a direct impact on species and habitats, but may also set off a cascade of perturbations that affect the entire food web, new research finds. […]

  • Oil spill impacts in coastal wetland
    on July 10, 2017 at 1:17 pm

    The Deepwater Horizon oil spill is still affecting wetland plants, a new study confirms. A paper explains how the presence of surface and buried crude oil under flooded and drained conditions affects the redox of wetland soils, an important control of wetland soil functions. […]

  • Sucking up spilt oil
    on July 7, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    Spilt crude oil has repeatedly polluted and even destroyed marine ecosystems. An effective measure would be to remove spilt oil slicks by absorption into a separable solid phase. As scientists now report, congelation of the oil to a rigid gel within impregnated cellulose and scooping the particles out is possible. […]

  • Better bacteria-busting techniques could make oil extraction greener, cheaper
    on July 4, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    Simple tweaks to oilfield practice could provide the offshore industry with a more sustainable, money-saving solution to health and safety, environmental and commercial threats posed by harmful bacteria in subsea oil deposits. […]