The air is getting cooler and football season is upon us. Summertime and vacations at the beach are fading into our memories. Harmful algal blooms (HABs), on the other hand, are still hanging around! This past summer was a bad one for all kinds of toxic tides, with dozens of outbreaks occurring along U.S. coasts, and in rivers and lakes. HABs shut down fisheries for months at a time, causing unemployment and illness, as well as millions of dollars in damages. They caused massive fish kills, while extending their lethality to birds and even to family dogs. Many of these blooms are continuing into the fall.
Fortunately, we're not standing still, and our champions in Congress aren't standing still. H.R. 3650, a bill to research, control and prevent Harmful Algal Blooms has been introduced in the House, and the Energy and Environment subcommittee will vote on it next Wednesday (9/30). With the Senate having already passing its HABs bill out of committee, and Congressman Brian Baird (D-WA) vowing to move his bill quickly, there is an excellent chance it will be passed this year. When that happens, we'll truly have HABs On the Run!
But to make this happen, we need your help right away. Please TAKE ACTION NOW and tell your Representative to co-sponsor the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act of 2009 (H.R. 3650) before next Wednesday. At the Ocean Champions reception, Chairman Gordon and Congressman Baird emphasized the importance of getting as many co-sponsors as possible to ensure that this important bill gets a vote in the full House this year.
The legislative calendar is crowded this year. Your support can make the difference! Please let your Congressman know that you care about beating HABs because you care about human health, fisheries, coral, and the economy, and because you care about clean coastal water. Please TAKE ACTION NOW and start preventing Harmful Algal Blooms today. When you're done, please send this email to your friends and ask them to do the same.
For the oceans,
The Ocean Champions Team
P.S. If you're excited about passing great legislation like the HABs bill, become an Ocean Champions member today. Your $25 helps us work closely with Members of Congress to fight for the oceans every day.