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Water-Related News

Waterkeepers hosting scientific forum on Harmful Algae Blooms

The presenters will be Dr. Dave Tomasko and Ed Sherwood, directors of the Sarasota and Tampa Bay Estuary Programs

On Friday, July 23rd, the Suncoast Waterkeeper and Tampa Bay Waterkeeper organizations will provide the community with a Scientific Forum on Red Tide and Lyngbya, focusing on the causes, effects, and solutions.

The Waterkeepers have invited government officials, their staff and other stakeholders. The event is open to the public but reservations are required for in-person attendance. The forum will also be virtual and recorded.

Suncoast Waterkeeper chairman Joe McClash said, “The question we keep getting from our community is “what can we do?”, what is the cause and how do we prevent this in the future? This forum will help answer those questions.”

Tampa Bay Waterkeeper chairman Megan Eakins stated, “Our Tampa Bay area has been impacted by an epic red tide event. Our members, some who are charter fishing captains, have lost their business overnight. Our organization will work hard to educate our community and elected officials on the science surrounding these issues, which is the focus of this forum.”

RESERVATIONS are required for in-person attendance (link below)
WHERE: Bradenton Yacht Club, 4307 13th Street West Palmetto, FL 34221
SAFETY RECOMMENDATIONS: COVID-vaccinated persons need not wear masks; unvaccinated persons must wear masks. Please do not attend in person if you have any Covid-related symptoms.
COST: $10 (includes coffee, tea, juice, fruit, bagels) Media may attend at no charge

Check-in begins at 7:30 a.m., Presentation at 8:00 a.m., Q&A at 9:30 a.m., Adjourn at 11:30 a.m.

ISSUE: Our region has been impacted by a Lyngbya algae bloom that sucked the oxygen out of our marine environment, caused a nauseating stench, harmed wildlife, followed by an epic event of red tide in Tampa Bay, killing massive amount of fish and dolphins, stinking up our waterfronts, and causing respiratory and other health issues. Both of these issues have devastating impacts on our economy, putting at risk the livelihoods of fishing captains, tour operators, aquaculture businesses and tourist related businesses. Both of these events occurred after massive dumping of nutrient rich water from Piney Point; a closed phosphogypsum stack, increased development and continued discharge of treated sewage.

Directors Tomasko and Sherwood will offer scientific information on the Red Tide and Lyngbya situation, some historical perspective, gains we have made, and the impacts from the current blooms. They will also focus on the causes, effects and solutions so that we as a community can gain valuable knowledge to assist in a path forward that reduces the economic, health and environmental impacts associated with these blooms.

Information for Virtual Attendance:
Join with Google Meet:
Join by phone: (US) +1 662-912-6165 PIN: 753 903 269#

Boats are available for media and government by reservation:
The Waterkeepers will have volunteers to take media and government staff or elected officials for a boat ride if requested in advance.

CONTACT INFO: Justin Bloom - Suncoast Waterkeeper
Phone (Call or Text): (941) 202-3182