Surreal images show a neon Chinese freshwater lake infested with monstrous algae bloom

[China] Green may be associated with health in other parts of the world but for China’s Chaohu Lake, it signifies death.

This unfortunate association is as a result of unstoppable invasion of the lake, located just outside of the city of Hefei in eastern China, by blue-green algae.

The naturally occurring organism exists in inland water ways, estuaries and even in the sea.

In small quantities, the algae is perfectly safe. However, it thrives in polluted environments

Chaohu Lake is affected by the algae problem every year. It’s one of the most polluted bodies of water in China. Blue-green algae thrives on the lake’s pollution, releasing more toxins as it dies, and is very difficult to control. The naturally occurring organism can be perfectly safe, but only in small quantities.

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As the algae blooms, it also depletes oxygen and nutrients for itself, ultimately causing its own death
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The toxic environment is not only poisonous to animals but also to plants, which need oxygen and nutrients to survive

Owing to industrialisation and urbanisation of the Hefei area, the lake is filled with sewage and other pollutants, making it one of the most polluted bodies of water in China. At 780 square kilometers, about half of the size of London, it’s also one of the biggest lakes in China.

The algae has bloomed in the toxic environment of the water, appearing every spring and summer.

The life-cycle of the algae is such that oxygen and nutrients are depleted from the water as it grows, killing off other plants and animals. As the algae rapidly expands, it also starves itself of resources and dies, releasing even more toxins.

People to have swim or swallow the water could also experience skin rashes, eye irritation, vomiting, diarrhoea, fever and muscle and joint pain.

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Things are no better when you get to the beach. In fact, the toxicity is made even more prominent by the shallow water
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Things are no better when you get to the beach. In fact, the toxicity is made even more prominent by the shallow water

Images that appeared on People’s Daily Online today showed a landscape haunted by green water, with signs of death already appearing.

In recent years, the city of Hefei has spent billions of yuan (millions of pounds) on finding solutions to its pollution problem according to China Daily. Last year, experts from the UK and China gathered in the city to discuss possible remedies.

Meanwhile, as sure as the tides will come back in, the toxic bloom will return.

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Photo taken on June 24, 2015 shows the Chaohu Lake
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People who swim through or swallow the water could experience skin rashes, diarrhoea and other more serious illnesses
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Although the algae itself isn’t toxic, it can suck out the oxygen from the water very quickly, leaving others living things like fish to die
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Although the algae itself isn’t toxic, it can suck out the oxygen from the water very quickly, leaving others living things like fish to die
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There’s nothing serene about living near this much pollution. Hefei government has spent billions trying to fix the problem
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Chaohu Lake’s green water merges with the few plants left along its banks into a sea of green
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Green may be the colour of health but it is anything but for the plants that are submerged in the Chaohu Lake water

 

Photo: Things are no better when you get to the beach. In fact, the toxicity is made even more prominent by the shallow water

View original article at: Surreal images show a neon Chinese freshwater lake infested with monstrous algae bloom

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