Florida and South Korea to Collaborate on Combating HABs

Seagriculture USA 2024
South Korea

Florida and South Korea have signed an MOU to strengthen international collaboration on harmful algal bloom management and response.

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with South Korea’s National Institute of Environmental Research to strengthen international collaboration on harmful algal bloom management and response, including for blue-green algae.

Harmful algal blooms significantly hurt Florida’s coastal economy and the health of Florida’s water resources. Both the State of Florida and South Korea are committed to developing cutting-edge strategies to prevent, detect, cleanup, and mitigate these types of blooms. This shared work is designed to further the state’s capabilities to effectively respond to and prevent future harmful algal blooms that impact the state, like blue-green algae.

“Florida’s unique environmental challenges demand bold solutions, and international cooperation is a significant step in that direction,” said DEP Secretary Shawn Hamilton. “We remain steadfastly committed to protecting Florida, and I look forward to a productive partnership that will enhance that mission by collaborating with some of South Korea’s finest scientific minds in our fight against harmful algal blooms.”

This MOU establishes a framework for collaboration, mutual learning, and sharing technology, including:

  • Cooperation on the issue of harmful algal bloom reduction, including reducing nutrient loading to waterbodies; monitoring, modeling, and risk assessment; and innovative treatment technologies.
  • The exchange of scientific and technical information through the transmission of data, reports, publications, and presentations.

“Through this partnership, we’re not just sharing knowledge; we’re forging a path to resilience against environmental challenges,” said Hanseung Kum, President of the National Institute of Environmental Research in South Korea. “The collaboration between South Korea and Florida highlights our deep commitment to deploying science and innovation in the battle against harmful algal blooms, ensuring healthier ecosystems for our communities.”

Upon taking office, Florida Governor DeSantis created the Blue-Green Algae Task Force to address the issue of recurring harmful algal blooms in Florida. The state has also invested $65 million in a diverse portfolio of innovative technologies to mitigate the effects and impacts of harmful algal blooms.

To read the MOU, click here.

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Seagriculture USA 2024
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