Another Growing Algal Bloom in China

By Sheril Kirshenbaum | June 24, 2010 5:37 pm

Here we go again… From the AFP:

BEIJING — A floating expanse of green algae floating off China’s eastern seaboard is growing and spreading further along the coast, state-run media has reported.

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Algae blooms are typically caused by pollution in China and suck up huge amounts of oxygen needed by marine wildlife to survive and leave a foul stench when they wash up on beaches.

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According to a 2008 State Oceanic Administration report, raw sewage and pollution from agricultural run-off has polluted 83 percent of China’s coastal waters, leading to algae and other problems.

Picture 12

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Conservation, Marine Science

Comments (7)

  1. Anthony McCarthy

    Every day I feel a little more like I’m living in the Eco Catastrophe that Paul Erlich wrote about in the late 60s. I’m wondering if the major thing he got wrong was his timing.

    Why doesn’t this get a hundred sixty comments?

  2. Why doesn’t this get a hundred sixty comments?

    Long comment threads generally ensue from sport and spectacle on the blogs, rather than the issues that matter most.

  3. Neel Parikh

    How much more can the Earth take? After reading the article about how methane in the gulf could create an oxygen depleted dead zone as well, it just seems that all we are doing is accelerating destruction on a global scale instead of beginning to stem it.

  4. cb

    What we humans are doing to the only planet we can live on is sad, indeed. Personally, I look forward to the fulfillment of Rev. 11:18.
    (There, that should inspire a few more posts.)

  5. Absurdist

    -Long comment threads generally ensue from sport and spectacle on the blogs, rather than the issues that matter most.

    The alternative interpretation is that such posts don’t get a hundred and sixty comments because most people agree that something needs to be done about this and there’s no need for argument.

  6. Eric the Leaf

    The Oil Drum often gets one or two hundred posts just on the daily news. Yes, there’s always a little sport, but nothing compared to the animosity provoked by discussions of religion & science seen here. Of course,The Oil Drum is a different kind of blog and it specifically cultivates expert dialogue on a variety of energy related issues.

  7. Algal blooms from raw sewage and land-based pollution have an incredible (negative) impact on ocean resources. we can “turn the tide” toward cleaner marine resources with more research and awareness programs like the ocean aquarium and research programs in Blue Hill, Maine discussed on this blog.


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About Sheril Kirshenbaum

Sheril Kirshenbaum is a research scientist with the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin's Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy where she works on projects to enhance public understanding of energy issues as they relate to food, oceans, and culture. She is involved in conservation initiatives across levels of government, working to improve communication between scientists, policymakers, and the public. Sheril is the author of The Science of Kissing, which explores one of humanity's fondest pastimes. She also co-authored Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future with Chris Mooney, chosen by Library Journal as one of the Best Sci-Tech Books of 2009 and named by President Obama's science advisor John Holdren as his top recommended read. Sheril contributes to popular publications including Newsweek, The Washington Post, Discover Magazine, and The Nation, frequently covering topics that bridge science and society from climate change to genetically modified foods. Her writing is featured in the anthology The Best American Science Writing 2010. In 2006 Sheril served as a legislative Knauss science fellow on Capitol Hill with Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) where she was involved in energy, climate, and ocean policy. She also has experience working on pop radio and her work has been published in Science, Fisheries Bulletin, Oecologia, and Issues in Science and Technology. In 2007, she helped to found Science Debate; an initiative encouraging candidates to debate science research and innovation issues on the campaign trail. Previously, Sheril was a research associate at Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment and has served as a Fellow with the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation at the American Museum of Natural History and as a Howard Hughes Research Fellow. She has contributed reports to The Nature Conservancy and provided assistance on international protected area projects. Sheril serves as a science advisor to NPR's Science Friday and its nonprofit partner, Science Friday Initiative. She also serves on the program committee for the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She speaks regularly around the country to audiences at universities, federal agencies, and museums and has been a guest on such programs as The Today Show and The Daily Rundown on MSNBC. Sheril is a graduate of Tufts University and holds two masters of science degrees in marine biology and marine policy from the University of Maine. She co-hosts The Intersection on Discover blogs with Chris Mooney and has contributed to DeSmogBlog, Talking Science, Wired Science and Seed. She was born in Suffern, New York and is also a musician. Sheril lives in Austin, Texas with her husband David Lowry. Interested in booking Sheril Kirshenbaum to speak at your next event? Contact Hachette Speakers Bureau 866.376.6591 For more information, visit her website or email Sheril at


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