Menu Menu

This lake in Argentina has turned bright pink

A lagoon in Argentina’s southern Patagonia region has turned an alarming pink colour, reportedly due to pollution caused by a chemical intended to preserve prawns.

Forget the Red Sea, it’s all about the pink sea these days.

At least, that’s the current situation in Argentina, where an entire lagoon has turned a bright pink colour – though it’s not for any uplifting reason. This isn’t some publicity stunt, sadly.

The bizarre change at Corfo Lagoon is reportedly a result of pollution caused by a chemical used to preserve prawns and get them ready for export. Sodium sulphite is an anti-bacterial product often found in fish factories, but the resulting waste is polluting water sources in the surrounding area.

Residents say the pink colour is creating grim smells and souring the land around the river.

Corfo Lagoon first started changing colour last week, as officials in the Chubut province told factories they could dump excess sodium sulphite in its waters. Chubut River has also been affected.

According to Juan Micheloud, environmental control chief for Chubut province, this change in colour ‘does not cause damage and will disappear in a few days’, though that doesn’t mean local residents aren’t concerned.

Plus, you know, it’s not great to be dumping waste into any lagoon, regardless of whether or not it causes any immediate issues.

The Independent reported that residents of the region blocked the path used by trucks to transport waste, which caused officials to give the go-ahead on the water dumping.

Pollution has clearly been a problem for a while with locals – sparking a back and forth on what to do with the heavy amounts of waste caused by the fishing industry in the area.

There is also a conversation to be had about fishing and our overall lack of respect for water in general.

Take Lake Uru Uru, for example, a once prosperous oasis that is now home to mountains of plastic and man-made waste. Volunteers have undergone a huge clean up effort this year – but a lot more needs to be done by authorities.

Perhaps this crazy pink lagoon will push more conversation around our water ways and respecting the seas we live around.

Though it won’t remain this surreal colour for very long, it is the wider impact of fishing, exporting, and trading that needs to stay in our minds.


Thred Newsletter!

Sign up to our planet-positive newsletter