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National Assessment of Efforts to Predict and Respond to Harmful Algal Blooms in U.S. Waters

Author(s): Jewett, E.B.; C.B. Lopez; Q. Dortch; S.M. Etheridge


Name of Publisher: Interagency Working Group on Harmful Algal Blooms, Hypoxia, and Human Health of the Joint Subcommittee on Ocean Science and Technology. Office of Science and Technology Policy

Place of Publication: Washington, DC

Publication Type: NOAA Special Reports

Date of Publication: 2007

Reference Information: 61 pp.

Keywords: HABHRCA; HABs; IWG-4H; National Assessment; Predict; Respond

Abstract: The report "A National Assessment of Efforts to Predict and Respond to Harmful Algal Blooms in U.S. Waters" reviews and evaluates Harmful Algal Bloom HAB) prediction and response efforts, identifies current prevention, control, and mitigation programs for HABs, and is the first step in a process to create an innovative research and development plan for advancing HAB prediction and response. In December 2004, Congress enacted and the President signed into law the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Amendments Act of 2004, otherwise known as HABHRCA 2004. The reauthorization of HABHRCA acknowledged that HABs are one of the most scientifically complex and economically damaging coastal issues challenging our ability to safeguard the health of our Nation’s coastal ecosystems. The Administration further recognized the importance of HABs as a high priority national issue by specifically calling for the implementation of HABHRCA in the President’s U.S. Ocean Action Plan. HABHRCA 2004 requires four reports to assess and recommend research programs on HABs in U.S. waters. This document is one of two linked reports specifically aimed at improving HAB prediction and response. The follow-up plan, the National Scientific Research, Development, Demonstration, and Technology Transfer (RDDTT) Plan on Reducing Impacts from Harmful Algal Blooms, is currently under development. This report was prepared by the National Science and Technology Council’s Joint Subcommittee on Science and Technology Interagency Working Group on Harmful Algal Blooms, Hypoxia, and Human Health (IWG-4H). It draws from the contributions of numerous experts and stakeholders from federal, state, and local governments, academia, industry, and non-governmental organizations through direct contributions, previous reports and planning efforts, and a public comment period. Given the importance of the Nation’s coastal ocean, estuaries, and inland waters to our quality of life, our culture, and the economy, it is imperative that we move forward to understand better and to mitigate the impacts of HABs which threaten all of our coasts and inland waters. This report is an effort to assess the extent of federal, state and local efforts to predict and respond to HAB events and to identify opportunities for charting a way forward.

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