Experimental Weekly Sargassum Inundation Risk (SIR v1.3)

By the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the University of South Florida (USF)

Status: Jul 2-8, 2024

Since 2011, large accumulations of Sargassum is a recurrent problem in the Caribbean Sea, in the Gulf of Mexico and tropical Atlantic. These events can cause significant economic, environmental and public health harm. These experimental Sargassum Inundation Risk (SIR) fields provide an overview of the risk of sargassum coastal inundation in the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico regions. Using as core inputs the AFAI (Alternative Floating Algae Index) fields generated by the University of South Florida (USF), the algorithm analyses the AFAI values in the neighborhood (50 km) of each coastal pixel and, computing the difference between those values and a multiday baseline, classifies the risk into three categories: low (blue), medium (orange) and high (red). In black are areas with not enough data. The two ad-hoc thresholds used for classification are 0.001 and 0.003. The vectors in the images represent the geostrophic currents. SIR is the result of the collaboration between the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (NOAA/AOML), NOAA/CoastWatch/OceanWatch, and USF. The methodology to compute these fields is under development and, therefore, these fields are experimental and to be used as a reference and for research purposes only.

Have you recently seen Sargassum and taken a picture? Maybe while at the beach, walking along the boardwalk, or even out on a boat while fishing or snorkeling. By filling out the survey below and uploading your pictures onto this NOAA/AOML Reporting Form, you can help scientists improve Sargassum monitoring and research. Your contribution to this effort is greatly appreciated. Some of the information you entered will be shared with the Florida International University Atlantic/Caribbean Sargassum Epicollect database.

View Other Reports:

Gulf of Mexico

Percentage of shoreline

Central America

Percentage of shoreline

Greater Antilles

Percentage of shoreline

Lesser Antilles

Percentage of shoreline

South America

Percentage of shoreline
These fields are updated on a weekly basis every Tuesday.

Sargassum Inundation Risk Contact Information:

Joaquin Trinanes
NOAA/Atlantic Oceanographic & Meteorological Laboratory
4301 Rickenbacker Causeway
Miami, FL 33149, USA
Joaquin.Trinanes@noaa.gov

Gustavo Goni
NOAA/Atlantic Oceanographic & Meteorological Laboratory
4301 Rickenbacker Causeway
Miami, FL 33149, USA
Gustavo.Goni@noaa.gov

Chuanmin Hu
USF, College of Marine Science
140 7th Avenue S, MSL119
St. Petersburg, FL 33701, USA
huc@usf.edu

References: USF Sargassum Watch System, Atlantic OceanWatch
Disclaimer:This is an experimental product and still subject to validation by NOAA/AOML, NOAA/CoastWatch/OceanWatch, and USF.