In 2013, the EPA Region I Laboratory and the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission invited stakeholder groups to a cyanobacteria workgroup. The goal of the workgroup was to collaboratively address issues related to cyanobacteria in lakes and rivers, including ecological and human health impacts, monitoring approaches, and communication with the public.
One of the key objectives of the workgroup was the development of an improved monitoring strategy for cyanobacteria in lakes in the region. Of primary importance to this strategy was the development and adoption of consistent methods for both short-term cyanobacteria bloom detection and long-term monitoring of cyanobacteria populations.
Over the past three years, a range of organizations (local, state, federal, tribal, non-profit, academic) have been actively participating in the workgroup to determine standard methods to use in sampling for cyanobacteria, a useful and practical approach to systematically collect and analyze the data, and best practices for communicating the results to stakeholders. While the methods are designed to mesh well with existing state monitoring efforts, there are also numerous ways for others to participate (i.e., citizen monitors, public health officials, water suppliers).
The group is set to expand monitoring efforts further in summer 2016 by engaging an even wider variety of stakeholders. A new website has been created (https://cyanos.org) to outline all of the group’s monitoring efforts. The site is designed to provide an easy way for interested individuals and organizations to learn about the workgroup’s goals and activities and access related methods, materials and results.
Presented at the conference by Shane Bradt, UNH Cooperative ExtensionSee the poster Learn about the conference