DURHAM, N.H. – On April 20th, 2010, the Gulf of Mexico experienced the worst environmental disaster in the history of the United States when the BP Deepwater Horizon (DWH) well experienced a blowout releasing millions of gallons of oil into the waters along the coast. Nancy Kinner, professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of New Hampshire, and an internationally recognized oil spill expert, is available to offer insight into cleanup efforts and lessons learned following the largest marine oil spill in the U.S., new research findings post-DWH, and dispersants and their potential use in response to future oil spills.
Kinner is known as a leading independent expert on the fate and effects of spilled oil. During the DWH oil spill, she was sought after for her expertise by national TV and print media outlets and testified before federal lawmakers several times. Kinner has taken a leadership role in creating and disseminating scientific knowledge in support of clean-up efforts, convening several high-level meetings among spill responders, scientists, and other stakeholders including in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska. She has expertise in the use of dispersants in oil spills and is viewed as an informed voice who can explain the complex issues of oil damage assessment and restoration in an understandable way.
“What happened with DWH had a detrimental ripple effect not only on the environment, but also with wildlife and the residents who live and work along the Gulf Coast.” said Kinner. “While we hope there won’t ever be another spill of that magnitude, we must learn from the lessons of the DWH and the subsequent $1.5B of research and development. A decade after that catastrophic event, we must reflect on how well we are doing applying what we have learned.”
Kinner is co-director of UNH’s Coastal Response Research Center (CRRC) and the Center for Spills and Environmental Hazards(CSE). CRRC is a partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) that stimulates innovation in optimum spill recovery strategies. The CSE is a center that expands the scope of interaction and cooperation between the private sector, government and academia to evaluate promising technologies and new approaches for response and restoration.
The University of New Hampshire inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation, and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top-ranked programs in business, engineering, law, health and human services, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. As one of the nation’s highest-performing research universities, UNH partners with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, and receives more than $110 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space.