Multi-Partner Research Initiative: Project summaries

Search the following filtered list for projects under the Multi-Partner Research Initiative.

Description Timeframe Funding amount Location order

Computer modeling to forecast risks, needs and challenges for responses to offshore oil spills

Project lead: Scott Socolofsky (Texas A&M University)

Project summary: After an oil spill or pipeline leak, some components of oil and gas may be trapped in the deep sea, with remaining components forming slicks on the surface or evaporating into the atmosphere. This project will use data on offshore oil spills and oceanographic conditions in Newfoundland to develop computer models to predict the entrapment of oil and gas. It will involve the development of an offshore response guidance table, based on the estimated risk of inhalation by responders and the fate of oil in the environment, to mitigate oil spills in Newfoundland waters. The overall goal is to understand how oil and gas behave in the water column and how much volatile organic compounds are released into the atmosphere as gas. This information will help decision-makers develop strategies to protect human health and the environment from deep sea spills.

Partners:

  • EnvHydro Corporation
  • ExxonMobil Biomedical Sciences, Inc
  • Dalhousie University
2018 to 2022 $400,000 International bottom

Oil droplet formation from underwater releases with and without the presence of gas at various dispersant-to-oil ratios: Implications for herders and dispersant effectiveness when oil reaches the surface

Project lead: Michel Boufadel (New Jersey Institute of Technology)

Project summary: The droplet size distribution of oil is critical for determining the pathway and fate of spilled oil, as droplet size can influence persistence in the water column. The goal of this project is to determine how much dispersant to apply for an effective response to an oil leak from an underwater pipeline in Canadian waters. The project will simulate an oil leak from an underwater pipeline and evaluate the impact of an underwater oil blowout, which will aid in responding to underwater oil spills.

Partner:

  • Environment and Climate Change Canada
2018 to 2022 $749,800 International bottom

Quantifying the effect of oil photochemical oxidation on the performance of chemical herders in Canadian waters

Project lead: Collin Ward (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Project summary: The goal of this project is to provide decision-makers with information on the effectiveness of chemical agents (dispersants and herders) in treating weathered oil in cold climates, which can aid onsite burning and oil dispersion.

Partners:

  • RPS Ocean Science
  • Applied Research Associates, Inc.
2019 to 2021 $637,666 International bottom

Effects of crude oil properties, dispersants and weathering on the breakup of plumes and slicks

Project lead: Joseph Katz (Johns Hopkins University)

Project summary: The transport of oil particles depends on oceanic currents and turbulence, the size of oil droplets and other oil properties. This project will characterize the breakup of different oils by a variety of natural weathering processes to further our understanding of the system dynamics of oil when exposed to the aquatic environment. The main goal of the project is to predict the fate and behavior of oil after a spill, so that optimal decisions can be made on measures to mitigate the adverse effects of oil on marine life and coastal communities.

Partner:

  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
2018 to 2022 $760,000 International bottom

Capturing the behaviour of oil on the metre scale: Oil convergence due to waterfronts and vertical advection

Project lead: Michel C. Boufadel (New Jersey Institute of Technology)

Project summary: Predicting and interpreting the movement patterns of oil on the surface of water is crucial for predicting the trajectory of oil and its ultimate fate. The existing approach in oil spill models does not account for all environmental factors that influence the system dynamics of oil in water. This project will define and quantify key variables that will enhance the accuracy of computational models used to interpret the movement of oil in water. The overall goal is to develop computer models, based on satellite and drone observations, to predict the movement patterns of oil spilled in water so that appropriate options can be used by oil spill responders.

Partner:

  • University of Miami
2018 to 2019 $299,999 International bottom

Impact of particle shape and hydrophobicity on the formation of oil particle aggregates: A combined experimental/numerical investigation leading to the formation of a predictive model

Project lead: Michel Boufadel (New Jersey Institute of Technology)

Project summary: The interaction of oil with sediments in the environment could form oil particle aggregates (OPA), which are clumps of oil surrounded by particles. The formation of OPA has been shown to reduce the size of oil droplets and to enhance the degradation of oil. The goal of this experimental and numerical investigation is to evaluate the likelihood of OPA formation, based on different particle properties (e.g. shape, affinity to water) and oil properties (e.g. thick, light, sticky oil), leading to a predictive model for oil cleanup response options. The results will be used to develop and test a software program that enables responders to predict the formation of OPA and the subsequent fate of oil.

2018 to 2022 $556,025 International bottom

Artificial energy by water flushing after dispersant treatment in calm seas or iced waters

Funding recipient: Per Daling (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)

Project summary: In calm sea conditions (both in open and iced waters), there may be a lack of turbulence to effectively disperse an oil slick into the water column after dispersant application. This project will test the potential for enhancing the effectiveness of dispersant treatment by introducing artificial energy through high capacity seawater flushing, typically 15 to 30 minutes after the application of dispersal agents to an oil slick.

2018 to 2019 $45,000 International bottom

Assessing effectiveness of bio-based agents for oil spill treatment in Arctic and subarctic environments

Project lead: Roman Netzer (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)

Project summary: Petro-based chemicals have become an important element in oil spill response strategies. Modern oil spill dispersants have been shown to help improve biodegradation of oil spilled offshore. However, they can cause ecological changes, and their use has an impact on organisms and ecosystems. The goal of the project is to assess the effectiveness of bio-based agents to disperse oil spilled in Arctic and subarctic conditions through biodegradation.

2019 to 2020 $40,000 International bottom

Better characteristics of burned residues from field- and laboratory-generated onsite burning

Funding recipient: Per Daling (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)

Project summary: Onsite or in-situ burning (ISB) has gained large interest in Norway and Canada as an oil spill response method. ISB may be employed by containing and condensing spilled oil with fire-proof booms or herders in open water or uncontained in ice-covered waters where the ice may help reduce the spread of oil. ISB will always leave a burn residue, and the fate, behaviour and effects of the residue are cause for concern. The goal of this project is to develop a methodology to estimate the efficiency of burning oil spilled in the environment through chemical analyses of laboratory burn residues.

2019 to 2020 $110,000 International bottom

Low sulphur fuels: A new generation of marine fuel oils

Project lead: Per Daling (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)

Project summary: Bunker fuels have been used for decades in the shipping industry. Their fate and behaviour in spill situations and the effectiveness of different measures for responding to marine oil spills have been well investigated and described. In view of the shipping industry's current movement toward using new low-sulphur marine fuel oils (LSFOs), this project will focus on improving our understanding of the variability in weathering properties, toxicity, fate and behaviour of LSFOs spilled at sea, which will help determine the effectiveness of different oil spill response options in cold water temperatures.

2019 to 2020 $110,000 International bottom

Direct and indirect ecosystem responses to oil spills and options for interventions

Project lead: Elizabeth Fulton (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australia)

Project summary: Understanding how oil spills affect marine ecosystems and the benefits and disadvantages of different response measures is essential when assessing the health of the ocean environment. The goal of this project is to use and further refine the Atlantis Ecosystem Model to better understand oil spill countermeasures and their possible effects on Canada's marine socioecological systems. The model will focus on major factors of real-world systems, marine habitat and environmental conditions. It could then be used to explore oil spill scenarios under Canadian environmental conditions.

2018 to 2019 $204,101 International bottom

Combined microbial sampler and physical sensor payload for rapid oil spill surveillance at depth

Funding recipient: Pascal Craw (Marine Laboratories: Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australia)

Project summary: An oil spill response usually consists of determining spill plume distribution using physical observations and chemical analyses performed on the sea surface. Additional information to characterize the size, depth and movement of a spill can be vital to minimize its spread and impact. The goal of this project is to develop a hydrocarbon pollution-monitoring system, involving state-of-the art onsite sensors that can be deployed in water to detect, measure and sample oil thickness, type and particle size and then test their integration into autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV). The research outcomes will provide oil spill responders with increased ability to collect information on the nature, depth and spread of the oil spill. This will, in turn, support the delivery and choice of more appropriate, data-driven mitigation and management strategies to help minimize environmental damage.

2018 to 2019 $243,225 International bottom

Essential aquatic toxicology data collection associated with alternative response measures

Project lead: Dr. Benjamin de Jourdan (Huntsman Marine Science Centre)

Project summary: This project will provide toxicological insights to decision-makers regarding specific countermeasures, based on the operational environment at the time of an oil spill response. The study will be conducted in natural seawater, using a range of environmentally relevant concentrations and exposure conditions. The research will examine culturally and economically important species that are relevant to Canada's marine environment, with a focus on the effects of alternative response measures during the species' different stages of life. The goal of the project is to inform decision-makers about the toxicological effects of oil spill cleanup measures on aquatic species. The outcomes of the study will increase Canada's capacity to complete world-class aquatic toxicology research associated with oil spills and appropriate response measures.

2018 to 2022 $2,439,983 New Brunswick top

Risk assessments of potential oil spills in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

Funding recipient: Dr. Haibo Niu (Dalhousie University)

Project summary: The Canadian Arctic Archipelago is an ecologically important area. Global warming will significantly reduce sea ice coverage in the Arctic and make it possible for the Northwest Passage to become a key shipping route between the Pacific Ocean and the North Atlantic Ocean. The environmental risks of ship-sourced oil spills in the area have not yet been well addressed. The goal of this project is to use a high resolution circulation model to assess risks from oil spills to conservation areas in the archipelago. Oil spill models from the project will help responders locate, identify the potential impacts of oil spilled in specific areas and influence decision-making.

2018 to 2021 $175,000 Nova Scotia top

Improved decanting and oily waste management strategies for marine oil spill response

Project researcher: Lei Liu (Dalhousie University)

Project summary: Mechanical oil spill recovery technologies can generate large volumes of oily waste. Researchers will focus on identifying technological barriers to separating oil from water as well as oily waste management. The results of the project will inform decision-makers to improve mechanical oil removal (decanting) and oily waste management strategies in Canada.

Partners:

  • University of Northern British Columbia
  • Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • University of British Columbia – Okanagan
2018 to 2022 $347,973 Nova Scotia top

ADIOS oil database enhancements

Project lead: Christopher Barker (Office of Response and Restoration – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)

Project summary: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA’s) Automated Data Inquiry for Oil Spills (ADIOS) is an oil weathering model that estimates how different crude and refined oil products undergo physical and chemical changes in the marine environment, enabling decision-makers to plan appropriate cleanup strategies. The goal of this project is to identify and fill information gaps in database records for major oil products shipped and used in Canada and the United States. To best support an oil spill response, the database will include complete records for major categories of oils in use today. This online database will be easily accessible to oil spill responders, providing them with essential data to support oil spill fate and transport models.

Partner: Office of Response and Restoration – NOAA

2019 to 2021 $182,000 International bottom

Comparing recent advances in estimating and measuring oil slick thickness

Project lead: Lisa DiPinto (Office of Response and Restoration – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)

Project summary: It is important to have accurate information about oil slick thickness when modeling the fate and transport of oils and when determining appropriate oil spill response measures. The goal of this project is to compare advances in characterizing oil slick thickness through wave tank experiments as well as field testing.

Partners:

  • Office of Response and Restoration – NOAA
  • Water Mapping, LLC.
  • Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement
2019 to 2022 $548,665 International bottom

SCAT and cleanup termination enhancements

Project lead: Carl Childs (Emergency Response Division, Office of Response and Restoration, and National Ocean Service – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)

Project summary: The Shoreline Cleanup and Assessment Technique (SCAT) is an important tool for enabling responders to collect data needed to develop shoreline cleanup plans. The volume of data collected during and after oil spills has increased dramatically in the last 20 years. Along with this increase in the volume of SCAT data, there has also been an increase in the difficulty and technical sophistication required to manage these large data sets and provide operationally meaningful analysis and interpretation in a response-relevant timeframe. The goal of this project is to develop software that advances the ability of responders to access, analyze, interpret and share SCAT data.

2019 to 2022 $234,000 International bottom

Oil spill alternative response measures – toxicity and biodegradation of treated oils

Project lead: Robyn Conmy (Office of Research and Development – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

Project summary: With the increased production and transportation of oil comes the heightened potential for accidental spills in Canadian waters. Research on oil spill countermeasures is essential to enhance oil spill mitigation tools and to inform decision-makers during spills, including efforts to protect natural and cultural resources. The goal of this project is to provide decision-makers with information on oil spill countermeasures by evaluating the ability of these measures to biodegrade specific oil products and their effects on aquatic species.

Partner:

  • U.S. EPA – ORD
2019 to 2022 $1,482,000 International bottom

Onsite burning as a response technique for oil spills in Canadian waters

Project lead: Feiyue Wang (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: Onsite or in situ burning (ISB) of oil spilled on water can rapidly remove significant amounts of oil from the marine environment. ISB can be an effective technique for oil spill response in certain situations. The goals of this project are to provide a critical review of ISB as an oil spill response technique in Canadian waters, train the next generation of researchers in oil spill response research and improve response options through ISB techniques for eliminating oil spilled at sea. This project will make recommendations to improve ISB in Canada.

Partner:

  • SL Ross Environmental Research, Ltd.
2018 to 2020 $305,000 Manitoba top

Small-scale testing of alternative response options for spilled oils in Canada

Project lead: Feiyue Wang (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: The goal of the project is to provide the oil spill response community with information to quickly and efficiently choose the most effective alternative response measures. This objective will be accomplished by conducting small-scale laboratory tests of different types of crude oil as they weather to a point where alternative response measures are no longer effective.

Partner:

  • SL Ross Environmental Research, Ltd.
2019 to 2021 $680,000 Manitoba top

Experimental field study of onsite burning with fire booms to reduce burn residues

Project lead: Feiyue Wang (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: Onsite burning can rapidly remove significant amounts of oil from the marine environment. However, this technique results in burn residues, black carbon soot and other emissions from unburned or partially burned oil. The goal of this project is to investigate the effectiveness of burning oil on Canadian waters as an alternative response measure for managing oil spills. The project will involve burn experiments and measure the efficiency of removing oil by burning, the amount and quality of smoke emitted, the amount of residue remaining and its physical, chemical and toxicological properties.

Partner:

  • SL Ross Environmental Research, Ltd.
2018 to 2021 $846,000 Manitoba top

Experimental field study of aerial herder and igniter use for onsite burning in drift ice and open water

Project lead: Feiyue Wang (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: Increased vessel traffic and oil exploration in ice-covered waters threaten to increase the risk of oil spills in Canada. One of the challenges to oil spill responders in ice-covered waters is the potential for spills to occur in drift ice, which greatly complicates the task of removing oil with conventional containment and recovery techniques. The goal of this project is to investigate the effectiveness of burning oil in ice-covered waters, as an alternative response measure for managing oil spills. The research will focus on the use of helicopter-applied herding agents to shrink and thicken large offshore oil slicks in drift ice as well as in calmer ice-free water. The findings will verify and improve onsite burning techniques for Canada’s oil spill response community.

Partners:

  • SL Ross Environmental Research, Ltd.
  • DF Dickins Associates, Ltd
2018 to 2022 $1,400,000 Manitoba top

Baseline monitoring of hydrocarbon contaminants and microbial genomics along the Kivalliq transportation corridor

Project lead: Gary Stern (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: Western Hudson Bay communities experience high volumes of ship traffic due to vast mineral exploration projects in the region. In the event of an oil spill, one of the challenges will be to discriminate between naturally occurring and contaminating hydrocarbons resulting from the spill. The goal of this project is to train Indigenous students to collect background data needed to distinguish between naturally occurring and contaminating oil products in the environment, thereby determining if natural biodegradation is a possible mitigation strategy along the Kivalliq transportation corridor. The project database will contain detailed profiles on hydrocarbon and non-hydrocarbon contaminants, as well as chemical concentrations in sediments, water and benthic invertebrates.

Partner:

  • McGill University
2018 to 2022 $770,000 Manitoba top

Onsite and offsite investigation of oil biodegradation potential in Arctic marine environments

Project lead: Søren Rysgaard (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: There is a lack of adequate knowledge on the influence of certain Arctic characteristics on oil biodegradation, such as low temperatures, sea ice, oceanographic conditions, the oligotrophic environment, poor microbial adaptation to the degradation of oil compounds and massive phytoplankton blooms. The goal of this project is to determine how Canada can respond to oil spills in Arctic marine environments by understanding the abilities of cold water microbes to degrade oil compounds under extreme Arctic conditions. By performing a series of chemical and molecular analyses, as well as biofilm profiling and imaging techniques, this research will seek a deeper understanding of control methods and the microbiology of oil biodegradation under Arctic conditions.

Partners:

  • Aarhus University
  • National Research Council Canada
2018 to 2021 $484,000 Manitoba top

Chemical analysis of oil and oil products and their changes in the environment

Project lead: Feiyue Wang (University of Manitoba)

Project summary: The chemical characterization of oil and oil products is essential to understanding the behavior, fate and toxicity of oils spilled in the environment, as well as assessing the effectiveness of oil spill response techniques. This characterization is complicated by the exceptionally complex composition of oil. The goal of this project is to study the chemical composition of oil and oil products and how they change in the environment. The project is essential to understanding the behavior, fate and toxicity of oil spills and assessing the effectiveness of various oil spill response techniques. Having a coordinated and integrated chemical analysis approach will allow for cross comparability of results across all projects within the Multi-Partner Research Initiative.

2018 to 2022 $1,900,000 Manitoba top

Oil translocation project: washing agent-aided shoreline treatment tool sets – evaluation, improvement and development

Funding recipient: Chunjiang An (Concordia University)

Project summary: Intertidal ecosystems are complex and susceptible to damage from oil spills. Once oil is onshore, cleanup operations can become expensive and time consuming. The goal of this project is to develop washing agent-aided shoreline treatment (WAAST) aids to effectively treat and clean oiled shorelines. The project will investigate shoreline oiling conditions before surface washing and characterize the effectiveness of washing agents for enhanced shoreline oil treatment. This information will support effective treatment strategies for onshore oil spill cleanups.

Partners:

  • Owens Coastal Consultants, Ltd.
  • Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • Polaris Applied Sciences, Inc.
2018 to 2022 $632,000 Quebec top

Review of oil translocation pathways and oil attenuation and weathering processes in Canadian coastal and marine environments

Project lead: Chunjiang An (Concordia University)

Project summary: Oil spilled at sea and in coastal areas moves rapidly between different physical and ecological environments. Understanding the pathways and processes that translocate oil is critical in decision-making about whether intervention is appropriate to promote natural breakdown, reduce environmental risk and accelerate recovery of the environment. The goal of this project is to provide decision-makers with information on the role of fine mineral particles in coastal and marine oil translocation processes and to outline how they vary for different oil types. The project will also address key questions associated with currently accepted intervention practices.

Partners:

  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • SL Ross Environmental Research, Ltd.
  • Owens Coastal Consultants, Ltd.
  • McGill University
  • S3 Environmental
  • SINTEF Ocean
  • Polaris Applied Sciences, Inc.
  • Concordia University
2018 to 2022 $4,381,451 Quebec top

Controlled experimental oil spills in Canadian waters to evaluate remediation strategy readiness

Project lead: Lyle White (McGill University)

Project summary: Global warming is opening the Northwest Passage to a broad and sustained increase in human impacts, along with the exploitation and transportation of offshore oil reserves in the High Arctic. The goal of this project is to provide decision-makers with information on the ability of microbes to naturally break down oil spills that wash up on beaches in order to develop remediation strategies in the Canadian Arctic.

2018 to 2022 $1,461,650 Quebec top

Natural biodegradation of oil substrates and impacts of oil droplet size and aggregates on predictive model development

Project lead: Charles Greer (McGill University)

Project summary: Natural attenuation involves a number of processes that impact the fate of oil spilled in the environment. It includes processes, such as evaporation, dissolution, dispersion, photodegradation and biodegradation. Biodegradation is a particularly important process because it results in the permanent removal of oil components through the action of microorganisms, mainly bacteria, which are able to use many of the compounds in oil as a food source. The goal of this project is to improve alternative response measures by advancing our understanding of the advantages and limitations of natural biodegradation to clean up oil spills in the marine environment. This knowledge will be essential to identify regions that have natural oil degradation potential and to determine how fast oil can be degraded.

Partners:

  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • Memorial University of Newfoundland
2018 to 2022 $1,799,233 Quebec top

Improved decanting and oily waste management for oil spill response

Project lead: Jianbing Li (University of Northern British Columbia)

Project summary: Mechanical oil spill recovery technologies can generate large volumes of oily waste. Researchers will focus on identifying technological barriers to separating oil from water as well as oily waste management. The results of the project will inform decision-makers to improve mechanical oil removal (decanting) and oily waste management strategies in Canada.

Partners:

  • Memorial University of Newfoundland
  • Dalhousie University
  • University of British Columbia – Okanagan
  • McGill University
  • National Research Council Canada
  • Huntsman Marine Science Centre
  • University of California, Berkeley
2018 to 2022 $1,900,000 British Columbia top

Analysis of technical effectiveness of using dispersants to treat oil spills in Canadian waters

Funding recipient: Baiyu Helen Zhang (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Project summary: Marine oil spills can cause enormous economic loss and negative impacts on our environment. Chemical oil spill treating agents can be very effective under certain circumstances to combat large offshore oil spills. Many of these agents are approved for use in other countries but must be evaluated for use under Canadian conditions. Researchers will investigate the effectiveness of using dispersants to treat oil spills in Canadian waters and build scientific evidence to support regulatory decision-making.

Partners:

  • Memorial University
  • Francois Merlin
  • Centre de documentation, de recherche et d'expérimentations sur les pollutions accidentelles des eaux (CEDRE)
  • SL Ross Environmental Research, Ltd.
  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • SINTEF Ocean
  • McGill University
  • SEA Consulting Group
2018 to 2022 $1,690,000 Newfoundland and Labrador top

Oil spill reconnaissance and delineation through autonomous underwater vehicle technology

Project lead: Neil Bose (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Project summary: Ship-based sampling methods for collecting data beneath the sea surface are difficult and expensive. Robotic autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) outfitted with sensors can measure oil concentration along with other chemical, biological and physical parameters. Researchers will use AUVs to assess how sensor and robotic technologies can collect vital data in open and iced waters to help inform Canadian incident responders about the spread of oil beneath the sea surface, supporting Canada’s oil spill response capacity.

Partners:

  • Dalhousie University
  • Oil Research Program, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Office of Response and Restoration – NOAA
  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
  • University of Tasmania
  • Energy Hydrocarbon Detection Team – CSIRO
2018 to 2022 $1,380,000 Newfoundland and Labrador top

Understanding interactions between oil, dispersants, exopolymers and particles for improvement of marine oil spill response

Project lead: Uta Passow (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Project summary: Oil spills at sea can be caused by accidents in the offshore oil and gas industry or marine shipping, resulting in environmental impacts on marine ecosystems. Researchers will investigate oil spill cleanup capability by focusing on how oil dispersed by chemical agents is processed by marine microorganisms, which play a role in the degradation of oil spilled in the environment. They will also examine the effects of bacterial molecules and particles on oil dispersion as well as the separation of oil into different phases.

Partners:

  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • Huntsman Marine Science Centre
2018 to 2022 $791,000 Newfoundland and Labrador top

Development of improved adsorption technologies for oil spill response

Project lead: Tahir Husain (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Project summary: Conventional oil recovery technologies generate large volumes of oily waste, which present significant challenges on land and, even more so, offshore. Researchers are working on new technologies that can remove significantly more oil from wastewater than conventional oil recovery techniques. This new treatment will improve techniques to lower oily wastewater to a level acceptable to regulatory agencies in order to allow its discharge at sea.

Partners:

  • University of Toronto
  • CSIRO
2018 to 2022 $700,000 Newfoundland and Labrador top

Natural attenuation and trajectory forecasting of dilbit spilled in Chinese/Canadian waters

Project lead: Baiyu Helen Zhang (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Project summary: Canada’s oil sands are the world’s third-largest oil reserve. Expanding oil exports and increasing transportation of heavy crude from Canada to China poses a growing risk of spills along international shipping routes. Working in collaboration, Canadian and Chinese researchers will investigate the biodegradation of spilled diluted bitumen (dilbit) over time and study microbial activities that occur during biodegradation. The outcomes of this project will facilitate policy-making and strategic planning in support of the sustainable development of energy resources in Canada and abroad.

Partners:

  • North China Sea Environmental Monitor Center
  • Dalhousie University
  • McGill University
  • East China Normal University
  • New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • Ocean University of China
2018 to 2019 $250,000 Newfoundland and Labrador top

Improved decanting and oily waste management strategies for marine oil spill response

Project lead: Bing Chen (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Project summary: Mechanical oil spill recovery technologies can generate large volumes of oily waste. Researchers will focus on identifying technological barriers to separating oil from water as well as oily waste management. The results of the project will inform decision-makers to improve mechanical oil removal (decanting) and oily waste management strategies in Canada.

Partners:

  • University of Northern British Columbia
  • Dalhousie University
  • University of British Columbia – Okanagan
2018 to 2022 $759,795 Newfoundland and Labrador top
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