Harmless Algal Bloom Causes Brown Lumps on Hove Beach in Brighton

Brown lumps spotted on Hove Beach in Brighton, UK, sparked concerns, but authorities confirmed they are harmless algal blooms caused by rising water temperatures. The natural phenomenon is common during summer months and poses no threat to public health or the environment.

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Nitish Verma
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Harmless Algal Bloom Causes Brown Lumps on Hove Beach in Brighton

Harmless Algal Bloom Causes Brown Lumps on Hove Beach in Brighton

Residents of Brighton, UK, were recently concerned after spotting brown lumps on Hove Beach near Marrocco's restaurant. However, the Brighton and Hove City Council and the Environment Agency have confirmed that the lumps are likely a harmless algal bloom, a natural phenomenon caused by rising water temperatures.

The sighting was first reported by resident Geoff Tinegate, who took a picture of the brown contents at low tide and posted it on Facebook, sparking concerns and theories from otherpeople. The city council and Environment Agency quickly responded to allay fears, explaining that algal blooms are a common occurrence during the summer months when water temperatures rise, causing algae to reproduce rapidly.

The Brighton and Hove City Council stated, "If you see sludgy looking stuff that doesn't smell very nice on parts of the beach during the summer, don't panic. It's called algal bloom." They further explained that the algal bloom season typically lasts for about a month before disappearing on its own.

An Environment Agency spokesman added, "We believe the suspected sewage pollution on Rottingdean and Hove beaches is the breakdown of algal blooms. It's easy to mistake algae for sewage, particularly as both have an unpleasant smell, but foam on the water's surface or on the beach is most likely to be the result of an algal bloom breaking down."

The Environment Agency clarified that algal blooms can appear as a creamy brown foam on the water's surface and, in rare cases, form thick blankets alongside the shoreline. Despite their unpleasant smell, algal blooms are harmless and a natural part of the marine ecosystem.

The Environment Agency maintains a 24-hour hotline (0800 80 7060) for reporting suspected pollution incidents. However, in this case, the brown lumps on Hove Beach have been confirmed to be a harmless algal bloom, a natural occurrence during the summer months when water temperatures rise. Residents and beachgoers can rest assured that the phenomenon poses no threat to public health or the environment.