The following guide identifies resources pertaining to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (April 2010) in the Gulf of Mexico that are available at UNCW's Randall Library, online through its subscription databases, or freely available via the Internet. Several resources are useful for researching oil spills, generally, as well.

Videos, DVDs & Music

Blind Spot. Northampton, MA: Media Education Foundation, 2009.

A Crude Awakening: the Oil Crash. New York: New Video Group, 2007.

Crude Impact. San Francisco: Vista Clara Films, 2009.

Energy War. Brooklyn, NY: First Run/Icarus Films, 2007.

Extreme Oil. Princeton, NJ: Films for the Humanities and Sciences, 2004.

New Energies. Princeton, NJ: Films for the Humanities and Sciences, 1995.

The Oil Curse. Princeton, NJ: Films for the Humanities and Sciences, 2004.

Organic Cleanup: Microbes and Pollution. Princeton, NJ: Films for the Humanities and Sciences, 2002.

Who Killed the Electric Car? Culver City, CA: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, 2006.


Biological Effects of Oil Pollution: A Comprehensive Bibliography with Abstracts

Compilation of abstracts of literature on the biological effects of oil pollution. Coverage is provided on oil spill incidents, toxicity, tainting, behavioral effects, physiological effects, biodegradation, effects of cleaning agents, analyses for petroleum hydrocarbons in tissues and other related topics. Prepared by the United States Coast Guard in 1978.

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Dispersants Bibliography

Compiled by the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON) Library, the bibliography is a searchable database of literature published on oil dispersants from 1960 through June 2008.

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Government Resources

As a participant in the Federal Depository Library Program, Randall Library receives and provides access to a wide range of government publications from federal agencies including The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, The Environmental Protection Agency, The U.S. Geological Survey, The Department of Homeland Security and many others. Research assistance is also available at the Learning Commons and the Government Documents Department located in Randall Library.

Currin, M., and S.W. Ross. Boating Uses, Economic Significance, and Information for North Carolina’s Offshore Area “The Point.” Volume I: Characterization of Recreational and Commercial Fisheries at “The Point”- Offshore North Carolina. U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans, LA, 2002.

Palmquist, R.B., P.W. Schuhmann, P.W., and J.A. Michael. Boating Uses, Economic Significance, and Information Inventory for North Carolina’s Offshore Area, “The Point." Volume II: Economic Analysis of “The Point” and Adjacent Counties – Baseline Information, Valuation, and Potential Impacts.  U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans, LA, 2002.

Ross, S.W., J. E.F. Aschenbach III, and J. Ott. Boating Uses, Economic Significance, and Information Inventory for North Carolina’s Offshore Area, “The Point." Volume III: Data Inventory Related to the Hatteras Middle Slope Area Bibliography. U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans, LA, 2002.

Wallace, B., J. Kirkley, T. McGuire, D. Austin, and D. Goldfield. Assessment of Historical, Social, and Economic Impacts of OCS Development on Gulf Coast Communities. Volume I: Executive Summary and Volume II: Narrative Report. U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, New Orleans, LA, 2004. [Available at UNCW's Randall Library]


OCS-Related Incidents

Available from the Minerals Management Service, the site provides access to oil and gas industry statistics regarding injuries, explosions, fires, lose of well control, collisions, pollution, and other incidents on the Outer Continental Shelf. Also included are oil spill statistics for 1964 to present.

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Datasets, Maps & Imagery

NASA Imagery

High resolution imagery of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill from NASA.

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NODC Support Resources for the Deepwater Horizon Incident

Access to archived Deepwater Horizon data, climatology data, ocean currents data, coastal ecosystem maps, ocean profile data, and a selected bibliography from the National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC). Also included are links to Gulf of Mexico historial data and information, and recent incident-related news.

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Starting Points

Restore the Gulf

The official federal portal for the Deepwater BP oil spill response and recovery. This site provides the public with information on the response, current operations, news and updates, how to file a claim and obtain other assistance, and links to federal, state and local partners. Also included is a response timeline, statistics, maps and data, dispersent letters, among others.

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Resources on Oil Spills, Response, and Restoration: A Selected Bibliography (PDF)

Prepared by NOAA in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico and information on previous spills and associated remedial actions. The bibliography includes information sources concerned both with the harmful effects of oil and chemical spills to marine habitats and their associated living marine resources and with the cultural and economic impacts caused by such spills.

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UNCW subscribes to many EBSCO databases, including America: History & Life, Communication & Mass Media Complete, Film & Television Literature Index with Full Text, Historical Abstracts, PsycARTICLES, PsycINFO and SPORTDiscus with Full Text. Several databases may be searched at once. Full text articles are offered in both HTML and PDF format on thousands of titles. 

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EconLit, the American Economic Association’s electronic database, is the world’s foremost source of references to economic literature. This database contains more than one million records, with citations and abstracts dating back to 1886. EconLit covers virtually every area related to economics.

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Web of Science

This collection of databases offers an integrated, versatile research platform, it delivers easy access to high quality, diversified scholarly information in the sciences, social sciences, and arts and humanities, as well as search and analysis tools that enhance this content. Includes Web of Science Core Collection, which consists of multidisciplinary content covers over 12,000 of the highest impact journals worldwide.

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Books & Library Materials

Felder, Darryl L. and David K. Camp, eds. Gulf of Mexico Origins, Waters, and Biota. Volume 1, Biodiversity. College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2009. 

Galtsoff, Paul Simon. Gulf of Mexico: Its Origin, Waters, and Marine Life. Washington, D.C.: United States Department of the Interior, 1954.

Geraci, Joseph R., and David J. St. Aubin. Sea Mammals and Oil: Confronting the Risks. San Diego: Academic Press, 1990.

Loughlin, Thomas R., ed. Marine Mammals and the Exxon Valdez. San Diego: Academic Press, 1994.

McEachran, John D., and Janice D. Fechhelm. Fishes of the Gulf of Mexico. Volume 1. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1998.

Riegl, Bernhard M., and Richard E. Dodge, eds. Coral Reefs of the USA. Dordrecht: Springer, 2008.

Würsig, Bernd G., Thomas A. Jefferson, and David J. Schmidly. The Marine Mammals of the Gulf of Mexico . College Station, TX: Texas A&M University Press, 2000.


Cairns, John, Jr., and Arthur L. Buikema, Jr., eds. Restoration of Habitats Impacted by Oil Spills. Boston: Butterworth Publishers, 1984.

Clayton, John R. Oil Spill Dispersants: Mechanisms of Action and Laboratory Tests. Boca Raton, FL: C.K. Smoley, 1993.

Fingas, Mervin F. The Basics of Oil Spill Cleanup. 2nd ed. Boca Raton, FL: Lewis Publishers, 2001.


Coley, David. Energy and Climate Change: Creating a Sustainable Future. Chichester: John Wiley, 2008.

Evans, Robert L. Fueling our Future: An Introduction to Sustainable Energy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007.

Kunstler, James Howard. The Long Emergency: Surviving the Converging Catastrophes of the Twenty-first Century. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 2005.


Beamish, Thomas D. Silent Spill: The Organization of an Industrial Crisis. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2002.

Cato, James C., ed. Gulf of Mexico Origins, Waters, and Biota. Volume 2, Ocean and Coastal Economy. College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2009.

Colazingari, Marco. Marine Natural Resources and Technological Development: An Economic Analysis of the Wealth from the Oceans. New York: Routledge, 2008.

Duffield, John S. Over a Barrel: The Costs of U.S. Foreign Oil Dependence. Stanford: Stanford Law and Politics, 2008.

Klee, Gary A. The Coastal Environment: Toward Integrated Coastal and Marine Sanctuary Management. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1999.

Kubasek, Nancy, and Gary S. Silverman. Environmental Law. 6th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008.

Maass, Peter. Crude World: The Violent Twilight of Oil. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2009.

Maugeri, Leonardo. The Age of Oil: The Mythology, History, and Future of the World's Most Controversial Resource. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, 2006.

Nakaya, Andrea C., ed. Oil. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2006. 

Olien, Roger M., and Diana Davids Olien. Oil and Ideology: The Cultural Creation of the American Petroleum Industry. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2000. 


Fitzgerald, Edward A. The Seaweed Rebellion: Federal-State Conflicts Over Offshore Energy Development. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2001.

Freudenburg, William R., and Robert Gramling. Oil in Troubled Waters: Perceptions, Politics, and the Battle Over Offshore Drilling. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1994. [electronic book]

Goldstein, Joan, ed. The Politics of Offshore Oil. New York, NY: Praeger, 1982.

Haerens, Margaret, ed. Offshore Drilling. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2010.

Moorefield, Anna. Future of Offshore Oil Drilling in North Carolina. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Wilmington, NC: University of North Carolina Wilmington, 2010.


Boesch, Donald F, Carl H. Hershner, and Jerome H. Milgram. Oil Spills and the Marine Environment. Cambridge, MA: Ballinger Pub. Co., 1974.

Brebbia, C.A., ed. Environmental Problems in Coastal Regions VI: Including Oil Spill Studies. Southampton: WIT Press, 2006.

Burger, Joanna. Oil Spills. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1997.

Easton, Robert Olney. Black Tide: The Santa Barbara Oil Spill and its Consequences. New York: Delacorte Press, 1972.

National Research Council. Petroleum in the Marine Environment. Washington: National Academy of Sciences, 1975.

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