Lam Tsuen River turns into a beautiful sky blue, but residents fear it is caused by pollution

Tai Po’s Lam Tsuen River turned sky blue on Monday. (Photo: Facebook/Rex Ng & Stella Chan)
Tai Po’s Lam Tsuen River turned sky blue on Monday. (Photo: Facebook/Rex Ng & Stella Chan)

It may look pretty, but images showing the Lam Tsuen River in Eastern New Territories turning a milky shade of sky blue are causing concern among Tai Po residents and environmentalists. 

Some people posted photos of the river sporting an uncharacteristically pale blue hue on social media on Monday. 

A netizen shared this photo of the Lam Tsuen River in an unusual shade of blue on Monday. (Photo: Facebook/Rex Ng)
A Facebook user posted this photo of the Lam Tsuen River in a sky blue shade on Monday. (Photo: Facebook/Stella Chan)

“There is white water flowing in Lam Tsuen River and rubbish filling the flower trough on the bridge. This shows what Hongkongers are like in terms of environmental awareness and public morality,” said one Facebook user.

A Facebook user condemned Hongkongers for turning the river blue and throwing thrash into a flower trough. (Photo: Facebook/Tim Ay)

Environmentalists urged businesses and residents to not pour sewage into roadside canals as it would pollute the beautiful river and disrupt its ecology.

Green group Environmentalist Association Ltd said it was worried about pollution in the Lam Tsuen River. (Photo: Facebook/Environmental Association Ltd)

Tai Po district councilor Lau Yung-wai said he believes the river’s sky blue shade was caused by the improper disposal of paints. 

“A resident just informed me that there are currently painting works for the exterior walls of the Tai Po Swimming Pool and the paint used is also blue,” said Lau. 

He added he has notified the Environmental Protection Department and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department to look into the matter. 

Lau also said some other residents have forwarded him photos, taken at the intersection between Tai Po Garden and Mui Shue Hang Park, showing blue liquid coming out of a storm drain.

A Hong Kong district councilor shared a collage of photos showing blue liquid coming out of a storm drain in Tai Po. (Photo: Facebook/Lau Yung Wai)

He added that the Environmental Protection Department and the Drainage Services Department have been notified regarding the matter and were investigating.

Lau urged people to report to authorities if they find anyone dumping paint into storm drains as the pigments will flow directly into rivers and cause pollution.

The Lam Tsuen River was ranked the 70th most polluted waterway in the world in terms of concentration of medications, according to a study, released earlier this year, of 258 waterways in 104 countries led by researchers from the University of York.

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