First Algae Warning Issued for Han River in 15 Years

Article from Yonhap News:

‘Green Tide Emergency’: First Algae Warning Issued for Han River in 15 Years

For the first time in 15 years an algae warning has been issued for the Han River.

Since the Seoul government’s implementation in 2000 of the warning system for the section of the Han River that runs through its boundaries, there have been 8 algae precautions issued but no algae warnings until now. The section of the river feeding Paldang Lake has also never had an algae warning.

The algae warning was issued on June 30th at 2pm for the section of the river between Jamsil Bridge and Haengju Bridge.

Results from algal investigations at five different points (The Seongsu, Hannam, Hangang, Mapo, and Seongsan Bridges) conducted by the city showed that blue-green algae cells and chlorophyll-a were in excess of the algae warning standards at the Seongsan Bridge and surpassed the algae precaution standards at the four other locations.

An algae warning is issued when blue-green algae amounts exceed 5,000 cells per milliliter or when the concentration of chlorophyll-a is over 25 milligrams per milliliter.

27,076 blue-green algae cells and a chlorophyll-a concentration of 75.1 mg were recorded at the Seongsan Bridge. Blue-green algae counts between 567 and 4,588 and chlorophyll-a concentrations between 22.9 mg and 49.2 mg were measured at the other four bridges.

The neurotoxins frequently found in blue-green algae can cause breathing difficulties and harm to neurotransmitters. Green algae hinders the flow of water, creating a foul smell and harms the ecosystem. The toxicity of the blue-green algae is currently being tested, with results scheduled for release on July 3rd.

A green tide is a phenomenon where the rapid reproduction of green and blue-green algae changes the color of the water to green. If a green tide arises, underwater organisms die and the ecosystem suffers.

The Seoul Government has assured that the section of the river upstream from Jamsil has not surpassed warning system levels but they are keeping close watch.

Following the issue of an algae warning, the government immediately creates and operates an algae response center and forms a response team.

In order to send the green tide downstream, the government has been keeping the floodgate at Kimpo Bridge closed since June 29th, inducing the green tide to flow over the fixed structure instead.

A representative for the Seoul Water Management Division remarked that, “This type of situation where the lower half of the Han River has exceeded the algae warning standards before the upper half is unprecedented.”

Analysts blame the Paldang Dam’s discharge volume, which was 56% lower this June compared to last year, thus hindering the flow of water.

The greater river system has not been flowing properly due to low water levels, which some believe explains why the green tide has only appeared in the lower half.

The National Weather Service predicts a lack of rain in the Seoul area until July 7th which will propagate the green tide for the time being.

The government requests that residents refrain from water-skiing, fishing, or cooking near the affected area.

Comments from Naver:

ksyk****

Lee Myung-bak, are you watching?

supe****

What kind of mess has Mouse Myung-bak made?

virg****

Let’s start by arresting Lee Myung-bak…

merc****

Myung-bak Myung-bak Lee Myung-bak!

will****

Because of traitor Lee Myung-bak I miss the great Roh Moo-hyun even more.

0102****

Lee Myung-bak, take responsibility. Nature is hard to restore once it falls ill. You will receive divine judgement.

oppa****

Add him to the top of the list of the 100 criminals who ruined Korea.

dldd****

While other countries protect their natural resources for the sake of tourism or their futures we’re hard at work tearing ours down to make money ha. I bet some of them became rich while overseeing all that construction haha. Money comes first, what could be important about the future? They justify digging up the whole country by thinking they can just take the money and emigrate ha. To think they do this kind of shit with our taxes damn~~

anfs****

It looks more like green paint than green tea…

lux4****

You can’t protect the environment but you can make this kind of mess? Either way you’re spending money.

eunh****

Tell me where Mouse Myung-bak is hiding

merc****

dnjs****

I can’t help but recall that time in the movie theater that Lee Myung-bak referred to the Four Rivers Project as water conservation

wlla****

Now we really need to arrest him…

illh****

A product of Lee Myung-bak and Park Geun-hye…the Four Major Rivers Project meant to protect against droughts was useless…get it together you two!!!

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  • Well one of the main aspects of the Four Rivers Project was to promote green growth…

  • Xman2014

    So even the severe drought that has been ongoing for two years is LMB’s fault?
    Is he also responsible for the Global Warming too?

    • 금정산

      *** LMB is directly and solely responsible for the current El Nino oscillation. He needs to be arrested and punished for crimes agianst Korea.

  • A Gawd Dang Mongolian

    So…if I understand this…Lee got revenge on Park bye…seeding the river with algae? Okay.

    • chucky3176

      No. Lee and Park are guilty of causing the drought that dried up the river beds which is not flowing and causing an algae bloom, because there’s not enough water.

      Seriously speaking, the drought is one of the longest on Korean records. It’s causing grocery bills (especially produces) to go up into astronomical sphere. Some parts of South Korea are now even tropical. Cold water fish that used to be caught in Korean waters are disappearing, replaced by tropical fishes. There are even reports of South American Pirana’s surviving the winters in a Korean river the other day when they caught six of those suckers.

      With climatic changes seen in South Korea, water shortages are going to be very serious in the near future. They may have to construct more desalination plants to turn sea water into drinking water. Korea’s first desalination plant opened just few months back.

  • 금정산

    Much of Asia is facing El Nino resultant drought. And yet, Koreans see an algal bloom and blame it on the government. Go figure.

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