1st Cyanobacteria Twitter Conference, 24 October 2018

On 24 October 2018, the International Day of Climate Action, the Australian Rivers Institute (ARI), Griffith University, Australia, is excited to host the 1st online Cyanobacteria Twitter Conference with a focus on climate change effects on cyanobacterial blooms and its management.

The primary objectives are to:

– keep abreast of research developments and impact;

– strengthen our network using online platforms;

– identify new opportunities for collaboration; and

– provide outreach and engagement to a broad audience

Details on how to participate can be found here.

The deadline to submit  abstract-tweets is 30 September 2018.


Response of Natural Cyanobacteria and Algae Assemblages to a Nutrient Pulse and Elevated Temperature

Abstract from a recent paper by Lurling et al., published in Frontiers in Microbiology.

“Eutrophication (nutrient over-enrichment) is the primary worldwide water quality issue often leading to nuisance cyanobacterial blooms. Climate change is predicted to cause further rise of cyanobacteria blooms as cyanobacteria can have a competitive advantage at elevated temperatures. We tested the hypothesis that simultaneous rise in nutrients and temperature will promote cyanobacteria more than a single increase in one of the two drivers. To this end, controlled experiments were run with seston from 39 different urban water bodies varying in trophic state from mesotrophic to hypertrophic. These experiments were carried out at two different temperatures, 20°C (ambient) and 25°C (warming scenario) with or without the addition of a surplus of nutrients (eutrophication scenario). To facilitate comparisons, we quantified the effect size of the different treatments, using cyanobacterial and algal chlorophyll a concentrations as a response variable. Cyanobacterial and algal chlorophyll a concentrations were determined with a PHYTO-PAM phytoplankton analyzer. Warming caused an 18% increase in cyanobacterial chlorophyll-a, while algal chlorophyll-a concentrations were on average 8% higher at 25°C than at 20°C. A nutrient pulse had a much stronger effect on chlorophyll-a concentrations than warming. Cyanobacterial chlorophyll-a concentrations in nutrient enriched incubations at 20 or 25°C were similar and 9 times higher than in the incubations without nutrient pulse. Likewise, algal chlorophyll-a concentrations were 6 times higher. The results of this study confirm that warming alone yields marginally higher cyanobacteria chlorophyll-a concentrations, yet that a pulse of additional nutrients is boosting blooms. The responses of seston originating from mesotrophic waters seemed less strong than those from eutrophic waters, which indicates that nutrient control strategies –catchment as well as in-system measures– could increase the resilience of surface waters to the negative effects of climate change.”


Lürling Miquel, Mello Mariana Mendes e, van Oosterhout Frank, de Senerpont Domis Lisette, Marinho Marcelo M. (2018). Response of Natural Cyanobacteria and Algae Assemblages to a Nutrient Pulse and Elevated Temperature. Frontiers in Microbiology 9, 1851. https://www.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fmicb.2018.01851

Algae blooms and climate change

A brief summary about the role of climate change on algae blooms written for the general public, is published by Climate Central.

“Algae occur naturally in most bodies of freshwater and saltwater. It’s normally fairly harmless, but the right combination of warm water, high nutrient levels, and adequate sunlight combined can cause a harmful algae bloom. These blooms can damage aquatic ecosystems by blocking sunlight and depleting oxygen that other organisms need to survive. Some algae, like red algae and blue-green algae, can produce toxins that damage the human nervous system and the liver (and they also stink — literally)………..”

Read the report here.


Health and Climate Change: 1st Scientific Symposium, Rome, 3-5 December 2018

The First Scientific Symposium on “Health and Climate Change is organized by the Istituto Superiore di Sanità in Rome, on 3-5 December 2018.

The aim of the Symposium is to promote an intersectoral and multidisciplinary approach to estimate, and to prevent, climate change-related events as well as to prepare the authorities to put in place measures to reduce adverse health effects.

Registration to the Conference is Free.

The deadline for abstract submission is extended to 16 August 2018.

For more details, visit the Symposium’s website.