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Restoring the Gulf: 10 Years After Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

April 13, 2020

This April marks 10 years since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Learn more about our efforts to restore the Gulf's ecosystem since then.

1280_Qtaxk5SmiP12.png Aerial view of Barataria Basin marsh, part of the Gulf Spill restoration.

GulfCorps monitoring restored oyster reefs.

This April, NOAA is commemorating 10 years since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, considered the largest U.S. offshore oil spill in history, resulting in the tragic loss of human and marine life. NOAA and other federal and Gulf state partners are working with the public, partners, and industry to support restoration and recovery of the Gulf of Mexico’s natural resources using the $20.8 billion environmental damage settlement.

NOAA is using lessons learned from the spill and subsequent research to be even better prepared to provide expert scientific support during responses and damage assessments of present and future oil spills.

Explore the features below to learn how more about the ways we are restoring the Gulf and the progress we've made 10 years after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.


Restoring the Gulf: 10 Years After Deepwater Horizon

The Deepwater Horizon spill impacted the entire Gulf ecosystem as well as the communities that rely on the Gulf's natural resources. Watch this video to learn more about the restoration efforts that have taken place in the last 10 years.

Deepwater Horizon: A First Hand Account of the Spill

Senior Scientist Lisa DiPinto from NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration remembers what it was like to witness the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Watch the video below to hear her first-hand experience of the spill’s aftermath.

Deepwater Horizon: The Science Behind NOAA's Unprecedented Response

Senior Scientist Lisa DiPinto reveals the science behind NOAA's response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Learn more about NOAA's response


10 Years After Deepwater Horizon, We’re Optimistic About the Future

A message from Chris Doley, Chief of NOAA’s Restoration Center. He continues to lead our restoration work in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the largest marine oil spill in U.S. history.

Read this leadership message from Chris Doley

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How We’re Restoring the Gulf 10 Years After Deepwater Horizon

From the coastal marshes to the deepest parts of the Gulf of Mexico, the entire ecosystem was impacted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Now, NOAA and federal and state partners are leading the largest environmental restoration effort ever there.

Learn more about our work to restore the Gulf

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Infographic: Deepwater Horizon - Where Did the Oil Go?

The largest oil spill in U.S. history impacted coastal beaches and marshes, all the way to the deepest parts of the Gulf of Mexico, as well as the fish and wildlife that call those habitats home.

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Learn more about where the oil went

10 Years of NOAA's Work After the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: A Timeline

Learn the details of the work we’ve done over the past 10 years—responding to the spill, assessing the damage, developing a restoration plan, and implementing on-the-ground restoration projects—and how our work is continuing today.

Learn more about key restoration milestones


Dolphin Discoveries in the Decade Since Deepwater Horizon

Assessing the impacts of the spill on marine mammals in the wild is a complex task and can require years of ongoing study to understand how exposed animals are recovering. Since 2015, NOAA experts have partnered with scientific leaders from a diverse range of backgrounds to continue studies to determine how dolphins and large whales were impacted by the spill.  

Learn more about dolphin discoveries in the decade since Deepwater Horizon


Deepwater Horizon 10 Years Later: 10 Questions

Check out the top questions NOAA scientists receive about the oil spill and the historic restoration effort of the Gulf of Mexico. 

Read frequently asked questions about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill


Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Settlements: Where the Money Went

The oil spill triggered economic, environmental devastation, and a legal battle. It was largely settled when a Federal District judge approved the largest environmental damage settlement in United States history—$20.8 billion—on April 4, 2016.

Learn more about the Deepwater Horizon settlement 




Last updated by Office of Communications on May 14, 2024

Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill