Cyanobacterial Harmful Algal Blooms
Algae are natural components of marine and fresh water flora performing many roles that are vital for the health of ecosystems. However, when certain conditions are favorable, algae can rapidly multiply causing "blooms" or dense surface scums. When blooms are present in large quantities they can pose a significant potential threat to human and ecological health. In addition to algae, microorganisms like cyanobacteria, historically known as blue-green algae, are able to form blooms some of them with the presence of toxins and other noxious chemicals. These are known as cyanobacterial harmful algal blooms (cyanoHABs) and are of special concern because of their potential impacts on drinking and recreational waters.
EPA has compiled information on freshwater cyanoHABs including causes, detection, treatment, health and ecological effects, current research activities in the U.S.; and policies and regulations for cyanotoxins at the state and international levels.
For comments, feedback or additional information, please contact Lesley D'Anglada (Danglada.Lesley@epa.gov), Project Manager, at 202-566-1125.