The IOC international harmful algal bloom program: History and science impacts
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, MA, United States; Instituto Español de Oceanografía, Centro Oceanográfico de Vigo, Vigo, Spain; Marine and Coastal Management, Rogge Bay, Cape Town, South Africa; IOC Science and Communication Centre on Harmful Algae, Department of Biology, Botanical Institute, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Harmful algal blooms (HABs) have become an important subdiscipline within oceanography. Heightened attention to this topic as well as significant research advances reflect the lobal nature of the problem and the development of strong national and international programs for HAB research and management. The planning, communication, coordination, and capacity-building activities of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) have been a key actor in this growth. Here, we highlight selected advances in science and management capacity or HABs and document the impressive growth of the field in the context of activities supported directly or indirectly by IOC. As we look to the future, the field has significant momentum and stability. Nevertheless, it will require scientific guidance and coordination going forward. With an appropriate commitment of resources from member states, the IOC HAB program can continue to be a major factor in the sustained growth of this important cientific discipline and its delivery of improved observation and management systems. © 2010 by The Oceanography Society.