Monitoring Program Expanded for HAB Event Early Warning in Oregon
NOAA-funded partners in Oregon have expanded a pilot project that protects the health of Oregonians while minimizing the economic impacts of closures of valuable state shellfisheries. The project monitors coastal waters for the abundance of toxic algae species (Pseudo-nitzschia and Alexandrium) and the algal toxin domoic acid.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) analyzes near-shore samples on a biweekly basis, while offshore, ODFW, NOAA Fisheries, Oregon State University, and the University of Oregon conduct year-round HAB monitoring via ships and satellites.
The project has demonstrated that monitoring coastal waters provides an early warning of rising toxin levels in shellfish, which should reduce the risk economic consequences of a HAB. A 2003 bloom cost Clatsop County, OR, an estimated $4.8 million in lost revenue, for example.
The goal of NOAA and the state is to transition to an operational program prior to the end of the pilot project in 2012.
National Ocean Service: NOAA and Partners Expand Monitoring Program to Provide an Early Warning of HAB Events in Oregon
Oregon State University: HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOMS ON RISE GLOBALLY, BUT OREGON MONITORING AT RISK
Oregon Business magazine: Predicting algae blooms in time to help coast economy