Principal Scientist Dr. Kersey Sturdivant to Present at the University of Chicago

The Department of Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago is hosting Dr. Sturdivant October 11th and 12th as he discusses careers after graduate school with students and presents work on macrobenthic recovery after disaster. Specifically, Dr. Sturdivant will present “The untold story of recovery following the Deepwater Horizon incident: A worm’s eye view,” which details how traditional benthic sampling missed the rapid recovery process following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2011 and highlights benthic community resiliency. “Human understanding of the deep-sea benthic environment has always been limited by our ability to sample it,” Sturdivant notes, “as a result, deep-sea benthic ecology has a long history of mischaracterization ([as evidenced by] Edward Forbes’ [superceded] azoic theory).” Dr. Sturdivant hopes this story of deep-sea recovery serves “as a cautionary example for future deep-sea assessments, especially in areas impacted by anthropogenic activity.”

A SPI Image from an early survey profiles the seafloor and provides new insights into benthic resilience after an oil spill.

INSPIRE’s Fish Trawl Work Featured in Christian Science Monitor

Eva Botkin-Kowacki/The Christian Science Monitor. From left, scientists Steve Sabo, Brian Jenkins, and Matt Griffin count and measure fish in a survey around the Block Island Wind Farm on Aug. 16, 2018.

Christian Science Monitor recently recognized INSPIRE’s involvement with the Deepwater Wind Block Island Wind Farm. In an article highlighting the collaborative effort of fishermen and wind farm developers throughout project implementation, INSPIRE’s trawlers feature as an example of partnership between scientists and stakeholders. INSPIRE worked with local fishermen to design and execute a survey that would assess how offshore wind farm construction and operation affect fish stocks, and we’re grateful to have had the chance to work with them!