As reported in ABC News, researchers who study the Gulf of Mexico downgraded their outlook on its ecological health because of the Deepwater Horizon oil catastrophe. This reflects a broad belief that, though the Gulf avoided the worst once feared, it will likely continue to feel the catastrophe’s effects for years to come. In order to best gauge the short and long-term damage wreaked upon the Gulf it is important to continually monitor the situation. Carbonfund.org partner LightHawk is responding to the environmental and economic tragedy resulting from the spill of oil and gas into the Gulf of Mexico. By operating the largest and oldest volunteer-based environmental aviation fleet, LightHawk is able to provide donation flights to protect land, water and wildlife. Their illuminating pictures of the oil spills’ reach help to spur clean-up action and maintain a focus on protecting what’s most important in the Gulf. LightHawk is assisting their existing conservation partners, like the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, in the affected areas and reaching out to new partners to provide donated flight missions. LightHawk is also working cooperatively with their sister group SouthWings whose volunteer pilots are responding to aerial mission requests. When the view from above will enhance efforts to scientifically document, educate and inform constructive responses to this effort, LightHawk will strive to dedicate the aerial resources of their volunteer pilots.