Hexed?

i-a5f20f4d0b3f592d2a3858fe20f9fd81-strm7_strike_277x187.jpgOur expedition to the Twilight Zone is still on hold because of generator problems on the RV Nancy Foster. Now we've got Hurricane/Tropical Storm Gustav bearing down on us from the Caribbean. The storm is expected to enter the Gulf of Mexico Sunday morning. So, even if we made it out to the shelf break by Saturday morning, we would only have a day or two of survey. We'll take it! When do we board?

But honestly, if it wasn't for this thing with Discovery Channel, I would feel hexed. Gustav is far away in the Caribbean, but already causing heaps of trouble here in the Gulf of Mexico. Oil prices are projected to rise, platforms are being evacuated, and scientific expeditions are battening down the hatches. At least two expeditions in the Gulf of Mexico are expected to follow after ours.

To make things even worse... somehow and sometime recently, gas prices started fluctuating with the weather, so the cost of fuel for an expedition rises everytime a storm comes through, like we're caught in a hideous feedback loop. Don't forget the Gulf of Mexico is responsible for 25% of US oil production. We get an "A" for oil. But unfortunately, we get an "F" for fisheries management. There's alot of work to do in that department.

UPDATE: The BATZ Expedition was canceled today at 11am. NOAA offices in Galveston are in a state of "hurricane preparedness", bracing for Gustav. Note that NOAA ships were called upon for coastal damage assessment in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, so if the storm(s) proves damaging, more research time could be at jeopardy.

More like this

100 m deep on Flower Garden Banks. Photo credit FGBNMS/NURC. Like many marine protected areas around the world, most of the seafloor in the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGBNMS) is deeper than the depth limit for recreational and scientific diving (50 m). We call this the "twilight…
The view from my desk in the kitchen is a sunny garden near the bay, but Tropical Storm Dolly is moving slowly west from 200 km off the coast here in the Gulf of Mexico. I am "in the Cone", but seem to be sidestepping the projected landfall as Dolly veers slightly southwest. The one question on my…
The following information is cribbed (with permission) from a FACTBOX produced by S&P Global Platts. Petroleum companies in the Gulf, especially around Houston, are are responding to likely shutdowns or possible damage due to the strengthening Hurricane, which is expected to have its largest…
There have already been several posts about href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/11/AR2008091100263.html">hurricane Ike on Scienceblogs ( href="http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2008/09/ike_texas.php">1 href="http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2008/09/…

Sorry to hear about your trip. I was hoping for a review of the vessel.

I hope she'll be available (and with favorable weather) in time for my trip in October.

I was hoping you wouldn't be impacted by the storm, but didn't catch that you had a delay for equipment. Damn.