Global Harmful Algal Blooms

Benthic HABs

New tools are necessary to manage and mitigate the impacts of benthic blooms on human health and the environment.

P.T. Lim, University of Malaya

L. Escalera, SZN

HABs and Aquaculture 

The oyster farms are susceptible to algal biotoxin contamination and blooms that have direct lethal effects on the shellfish

Cawthron Institute

Observation, Modelling and Prediction

New capabilities in observation and modelling will improve the detection and prediction of HABs

O. Wade, Hawkes Bay Regional Council

Biodiversity and Biogeography

Combining modern and classic taxonomy tools and long time series will contribute to identify the factors that determine the changing distribution of HAB species and their genetic variability.

C. Whyte, SAMS

Freshwater HABs and Cyanobacterial HABs
Coordination will help to develop a global perspective in advancing the science and management of freshwater HABs, and cyanobacterial HABs in marine, brackish and freshwater habitats

M. Burford, Griffith University

One Health
The most efficient way to protect human and animal health is to prevent exposure to contaminated sea products.

Washington State Department of Health

In the broader picture GlobalHAB contributes to improved management of HABs as an ocean hazard through improved preparedness and early warning systems contributing to UN Sustainable Development Goal 11, target 11.5 and Priority 4 and Global target 7 of the Sendai Framework on Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) 2015-2030.


Global Harmful Algal Blooms - GlobalHAB - an international science programme on HABs building on the foundations of GEOHAB

  • Science and Implementation Plan

An international programme sponsored jointly by the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR) and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO

Click here to view and download the PDF.

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The GEOHAB Core Research Project on Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) in Upwelling Systems

Upwelling systems can be classified according to their physical, chemical and biological characteristics. Development of a Core Research Programme on HABs in Upwelling Systems is built on the premise that understanding the ecology and oceanography of HABs in upwelling systems will benefit from a comparative approach. The comparative method is the method of choice when controlled experimentation is not practical. To the extent that experimental control in the study of marine ecosystems is problematic, comparison presents an alternative for drawing scientific inference. Comparisons will allow the grouping of harmful species from similar habitat types. The extent to which HAB species respond in a similar way, in systems which share similar characteristics, will assist in establishing the oceanographic processes that influence HAB population dynamics and community interactions. Equally important will be identification of similar systems that do not have the same functional HAB species or groupings. Understanding the response of harmful algae to perturbations within upwelling systems will assist in prediction, and identification of divergences from predicted responses will also be informative. Sharing of expertise and resources, the formulation of common research objectives and methods, and the implementation of similar research activities and field investigations in each of the designated upwelling systems will permit comparison.