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Lake Erie Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring & Response Strategy for Recreational Waters

Erie County, PA
Program Year: 2016

In recent years Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) have become a serious problem in the western end of Lake Erie. In 2013 a HAB was identified in Presque Isle Bay, off Erie County, Pennsylvania. As a result many local agencies came together to establish a local Harmful Algal Bloom Task Force. The task force’s first meeting was held August 14, 2013. The task force determined that a monitoring and response strategy for HABs needed to be developed for Pennsylvania, particularly Presque Isle Bay and Lake Erie. The goal of a strategy was to minimize exposure risks and potential health effects. Following numerous meetings and research by task force members, the Lake Erie Harmful Algal Bloom Monitoring and Response Strategy for Recreational Waters was finalized in May of 2014 and first implemented throughout the summer of 2014. The strategy includes procedures to monitor local waters for HABs, sample collection protocols, equipment methodologies, algae and toxin thresholds, educational tools, advisory methods, and community partner responsibilities.

Ms. Karen M Tobin
Environmental Director