Tackling Florida's Harmful Algal Blooms - Dr. James Sullivan and the Scientists Take Center Stage

"We're fertilizing the oceans." Dr. Doom of the Algal Bloom

In 2018, Florida suffered through the worst harmful algal bloom in recent decades.  Millions of fish died, washed ashore, and the "stink, stank, stunk" up the beaches and ran off the tourists.  Red Tide and Blue-Green were awash on both the Gulf and Atlantic shorelines with toxic aerosols filling the air and fouling the water in many communities.  Dolphins, manatees and even a few whale sharks succumbed to the dastardly blooms.  And, coastal businesses dependent on tourism -- like hotels, fishing guides, restaurants and bars -- fared poorly too.   Millions of dollars in business profits and local taxes evaporated into the stink-filled air.  Dr. James Sullivan -- nicknamed "Dr. Doom of the Algal Bloom" by his wife -- is a leading algal researcher and Executive Director of Florida Atlantic University’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute.  He is also the boss of the newly formed Florida Center for Coastal & Human Health at FAU and was recently appointed to the Governor's Blue-Green Algae Task Force.  Florida is looking to science to tackle the menace of harmful algal blooms, a good move, and you can hear first hand from one of the experts. many believe the blooms will continue and may get worse and, if so, tough choices are ahead for Florida and other coastal states.  He walks us through the science, the risks, and how to understand our changing coastal waters. Great show.  Only on the American Shoreline Podcast Network.

Show Transcription
Peter A. Ravella

Founder and Publisher of Coastal News Today and ASPN, experienced business owner in coastal policy, land use, grants, permitting and financing with a demonstrated history of working in the environmental and coastal services industry. Skilled in Government, Community Engagement, Beach & Dune Restoration and Financial Planning, Natural Resource Management, Wetland Mitigation, and Environmental Education. Strong education with a BS in Marine Biology from Texas A&M and a JD with Environmental Law Certificate from Northwestern School of Law, Lewis & Clark College, Portland, Oregon.