Karen Kavanaugh is the HAB Product Coordinator for NOAA's Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services. Karen leads a group of analysts that provide operational forecasts for HABs of Karenia brevis (red tide) in the Gulf of Mexico. These forecasts are used by public health officials, natural resource managers, and scientists to support their bloom response efforts.
Dr. Richard Stumpf is an oceanographer with NOAA's National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science. Dr. Stumpf works to improve forecasts of harmful algal blooms and develop and apply remotely sensed satellites to coastal regions. His research has included most of the U.S. east and Gulf coasts, the upper Great Lakes, and central California.
Harmful algal blooms, or HABs, occur when colonies of algae—simple plants that live in the sea and freshwater—grow out of control while producing toxic or harmful effects on people, fish, shellfish, marine mammals, and birds. The human illnesses caused by HABs, though rare, can be debilitating or even fatal. HABs are a growing problem in every U.S. coastal and Great Lakes state.