GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The University of Florida has unveiled a new website to address the public’s confusion surrounding harmful algal blooms (HABs) – the causes of such events, effects and attempts to combat future blooms. Scientists from several departments within the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and affiliated groups teamed up to provide expertise for the site, which is hosted on the UF/IFAS Extension website for water programs.
“UF/IFAS has faculty in all varieties of disciplines, spread across the state, working to address the problem of harmful algal blooms,” said Jack Payne, senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources. “This is an issue of great public importance, and our scientists are continuously searching for the answers to identify effective solutions.”
Contributing departments and programs to the website include fisheries and aquatic sciences; soil and water sciences; food and resource economics; agricultural and biological engineering; and family, youth and community sciences. The Florida Sea Grant program, UF Water Institute, UF College of Veterinary Medicine, and UF Emerging Pathogens Institute provided additional content.
The UF/IFAS Extension program, with a presence in every Florida county, plays a large role in informing the public on issues concerning their communities, like HABs. Through the Florida Sea Grant program, UF/IFAS also teams with 17 Florida universities to better understand and address the issues related to HABs. Other collaborative UF/IFAS work includes coordinating with entities such as water management districts, state and federal agencies, local governments, agricultural commodity groups and industries.
The website is at water.ifas.ufl.edu/harmful-algal-blooms.
The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS works to bring science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents. Visit the UF/IFAS website at ifas.ufl.edu and follow us on social media at @UF_IFAS.
(Featured image: UF/IFAS file photo)