NOAA and its research partners are forecasting that western Lake Erie will experience a smaller-than-average that aims to deliver accurate, relevant, timely and reliable ecological forecasts directly to coastal resource managers, public health officials and the public. In addition to the early season projections from NOAA and its partners, NOAA also issues HAB forecasts during the bloom season. These forecasts provide the current extent and five-day outlooks of where the bloom will travel and what concentrations are likely to be seen, allowing local decision makers to make informed management decisions. NOAA is actively developing tools to detect and predict how toxic blooms will be.
Nutrient load data for the forecasts came from Heidelberg University in Ohio, and the various forecast models are run by NCCOS, the University of Michigan, North Carolina State University, LimnoTech, Stanford University and the Carnegie Institution for Science. Field observations used for monitoring and modeling are done in partnership with a number of NOAA services, including its Ohio River Forecast Center, NCCOS, Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory and Cooperative Institute for Great Lakes Research, as well as Ohio Sea Grant, The Ohio State University’s Stone Laboratory, The University of Toledo and Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.