Golden algae in Oder? "German scientists seem to be closest to the truth"
"According to German scientists the ecological disaster in Oder River could have been caused by the so-called golden algae, which are found only in saline water," WWF Freshwater Conservation Specialist Dr Alicja Pawelec told TVN24 on Thursday (August 18). She added, however, it was impossible for this algae to exist in freshwaters and a question should then be asked how had it got there. "Not all test results have been made public, although the government boasts that they are carrying them out," the expert said.
"This situation keeps on unmasking the ineffectiveness of our national monitoring system, warning system. It's another day of the catastrophy, we still don't know what flows of flowed in Oder. We don't even know if it flowed out or is still flowing. More dead fish appear in Szczecin," Freshwater Conservation Specialist of WWF Dr Alicja Pawelec told TVN24.
She added that "we still have no information from the government and we're moving around in the sphere of hypotheses, while press conferences andthe parliamentary committee bring us no answers".
"Round the clock the government keeps on repeating information about high pH in Oder, about salinity, about high temperature. This things we already know. Still not all test results have been made public, although the government boasts that they are carrying them out. It seems nothing can urge the government to release these results to the public. We still haven't found out how they intend to prevent the disaster from spreading further," Pawelec stressed.
Pawelec: German scientists claim it was the golden algae
"It seems German scientists are closest to the truth," the expert said. "They claim it was the so-called golden algae. This is an invasive algae which is in the Baltic Sea, but what's interesting is that it lives only in salt waters. If Oder was in a good ecological condition, if it was fresh water with no increased salinity, then this algae would not have occurred in it."
Dr Alicja Pawelec also explained the golden algae was "a highly toxic algae, deadly to water organisms but not humans, causing such mass fish die-offs". "This algae could have flown into the river or been carried by water birds or migrating fish. It couldn't have developed in a perfectly fine freshwater river," she said.
"Why did it develop in Oder? Because Oder is heavily salinated and we can see it in test results. It shouldn't be salinated like this. Why such salinity in Oder? Partially due to mine waters. It may mean that plenty of released mine waters have amassed in recent weeks. Those are salt waters which could have possibly been stored in some reservoir on Oder and then suddenly released. This algae could have developed quite well in the reservoir's still waters, and then someone might have released the water with this algae and killed 534 or our river," the WWF expert explained.
Źródło: TVN24 News in English, TVN24