September 27, 2017 - OBISOBIS training HAB

Harmful Algal Bloom data training course, Belgium, 25-28 September 2017

The training course ‘Harmful Algal Bloom data‘ is taking place this week at the IOC Project Office for IODE in Ostend, Belgium.</p>

16 harmful Algae experts from 13 countries are trained in data entry into the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS) and the Harmful Algae Event Database (HAEDAT), both hosted by IODE (event details). The data will be used for the Global HAB Status Report. The meeting is funded by the Flanders Government through the OceanTeacher Global Academy and DIPS-4-ocean assessments projects.

Species records for OBIS are compiled from the literature. Editors within defined HAB regions were requested to collect publications associated with the occurrences of toxic algae and enter these records in HAEDAT (in case there is an impact) or OBIS (when no impact) from within their country and area of interest. The aim was to record at least one reliable record of the genera/species included in the IOC-UNESCO Taxonomic Reference List of Harmful Micro Algae per locality.

The IOC Intergovernmental Panel on HABs (IOC-IPHAB) has decided to develop a ‘Global Harmful Algal Bloom (HAB) Status Report’ with the aims of compiling an overview of HAB events and their societal impacts; providing a worldwide appraisal of the occurrence of toxin-producing microalgae; and assessing the status and probability of change in HAB frequencies, intensities, and range resulting from environmental changes at the local and global scale.

Linkages will be established with the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reporting mechanism which increasingly is focusing on the biological impacts of climate change. The Status report will provide the scientific community as well as decision makers with a reference on HAB occurrence and impacts on ecosystem services. IOC-UNESCO project partners include the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the International Council for Exploration of the Sea (ICES), the North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES) and the International Society for the Study of Harmful Algae (ISSHA).