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Fish deaths in the Oder: the authorities consider several causes to be possible

2022-08-23T03:03:27.357Z

Fish deaths in the Oder: the authorities consider several causes to be possible Created: 08/23/2022, 04:54 By: Bettina Menzel, Stefanie Fischhaber In connection with the fish kill in the Oder, Poland's government speaks of false reports from Germany. (Iconic image) © Imago/ Christian Thiel Thousands of fish died in the Oder. German laboratories continue to research the cause of the fish deaths



Fish deaths in the Oder: the authorities consider several causes to be possible

Created: 08/23/2022, 04:54

By: Bettina Menzel, Stefanie Fischhaber

In connection with the fish kill in the Oder, Poland's government speaks of false reports from Germany.

(Iconic image) © Imago/ Christian Thiel

Thousands of fish died in the Oder.

German laboratories continue to research the cause of the fish deaths.

Poland's government speaks of false reports from Germany.

  • "Fake News"

    -

    accusation

    from

    Poland

    : Germany counters in connection with fish deaths

  • Fish deaths

    in the

    Oder

    : the authorities consider several causes to be possible

  • Environmental disaster

    on the

    Oder

    : Poland boosts oxygen supply in the water with pumps in West Pomerania

  • This news ticker about fish kills in the Oder is updated regularly.

Update from August 22, 2:13 p.m

.: The federal government has rejected Polish allegations in connection with the death of fish in the Oder.

"We regret that this assessment came from Poland," said a spokesman for the Federal Ministry for the Environment on Monday in Berlin, referring to the accusation from Warsaw that Germany was spreading "fake news".

The search for the causes of the fish kill in the Oder is still not complete.

"Fake News" accusation from Poland: Germany counters in connection with fish deaths

“But no one in Germany and at no time claimed that the pesticides alone were the cause of the fish kills.

It is regrettable that the Polish Ministry of the Environment now understood the corresponding laboratory results as a way of assigning blame.” The German-Polish expert group that had been deployed met for the first time this Monday.

It is hoped that a "possible disagreement" will be cleared up when the laboratory results are presented and discussed there.

There are now several organic and inorganic substances that could be responsible, the spokesman said.

“It really seems to be a chemical cocktail.

According to our current knowledge, none of these substances alone caused the fish to die.” It could be a “multi-causal event”.

Fish deaths in the Oder: the authorities consider several causes to be possible

Update from August 22, 1:17 p.m

.: The death of fish in the Oder is an environmental disaster.

The entire ecosystem on the Oder - mussels, molluscs (molluscs), algae and bacteria - are affected.

A lot is still unclear at first.

The consequences are not yet foreseeable.

Water samples are still being examined in laboratories, but a lot of time has already passed.

In Brandenburg, the State Office for the Environment (LfU) said it received the first indications of environmental pollution on August 9, 2022.

A skipper had reported on the fish kill and therefore contacted the Berlin-Brandenburg State Laboratory (LLBB).

According to the authority, there may be several causes for the death of fish and species - as of August 22, 2022. Analyzes have therefore initially shown the following:

  • Excessive pesticide values ​​with the active ingredient 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid have been found (20 August).

  • Poisonous brackish water algae: Research teams have been able to prove algae poison.

    Satellite data confirms massive algal bloom (20 August).

  • Increased salt loads and an associated strong algal bloom were determined.

  • Mercury levels were within or slightly above the environmental quality standard.

Update from August 21, 7:49 p.m .: Research

into the causes of fish deaths in the Oder continues to be difficult.

The Federal Environment Ministry said the results of the current water sample tests are expected by the end of August.

Accordingly, investigations are being carried out in Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.

The environmental disaster should also be on the agenda of the German-Polish environmental council on August 29, 2022 in Bad Saarow.

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It is already known that mercury is not the trigger.

"The latest results of the IGB and the University of Vienna confirm the suspicion that there was a mass development of toxic brackish water algae in the Oder, which could be responsible for the fish kills," according to the German Ministry of the Environment.

The fish kill could also have been caused by a combination of several factors.

Environmental disaster on the Oder: Poland boosts oxygen supply in the water with pumps in West Pomerania

Meanwhile, Poland is apparently working on boosting the oxygen supply to the fish in the river.

This was announced by the head of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship, Zbiegniew Bogucki, on Twitter on Sunday evening.

There are already 17 pumps in the water for this purpose, and two more are to follow on Sunday.

On Saturday, Bogucki had already said that many fish would swim to the surface due to the lack of oxygen in the water and would be on the verge of suffocation.

The politician posted a corresponding video.

But at the same time he also gave hope: "Where we salvaged tons of dead fish a few days ago, living fish have now been sighted," Bogucki wrote on Twitter on Saturday.

Extent of the environmental disaster in the Oder: 200 tons of dead fish collected

The reasons for the massive fish deaths in the Oder are still unclear.

© Patrick Pleul/dpa

Update from August 21, 3:35 p.m .:

The cause of the environmental disaster remains unclear on Sunday.

But the extent is becoming increasingly clear: by Saturday around 200 tons of dead fish had been collected in Poland and Germany.

The Polish fire brigade put the amount on Saturday at 158 ​​tons.

According to the Ministry of the Interior in Warsaw, more than 3,000 firefighters, more than 2,000 police officers and 1,300 soldiers were involved in salvaging the carcasses in Poland.

Brandenburg had already reported at least 36 tons of dead fish in an earlier statement from the Ministry of the Environment.

Environmental disaster in the Oder: Poisoned river killed endangered sturgeons

Update from August 21, 2:55 p.m .:

According to the WWF, the ecological disaster in the Oder has had an enormous impact on the resettlement of the sturgeon in the areas.

The fish, which are threatened with extinction, are being resettled in Germany in the Elbe and in the Oder to preserve their species.

Due to the toxic wave in the Oder, 20,000 young sturgeons died in a breeding facility of the Institute for Aquatic Ecology and Inland Fisheries, as the WWF reported on Sunday in Berlin.

"The dead young sturgeons are only a small part of the environmental drama," explained Finn Viehberg from WWF Germany.

However, they symbolized “how human carelessness leads to the loss of nature and biodiversity”.

It must now be checked whether the food supply for the surviving or returning sturgeons is sufficient after the mass death of fish.

Poland's government accuses Germany of "fake news".

First report from August 21

: Warsaw/Frankfurt - The cause of the massive fish kill in the Oder is still not known.

More than 36 tons of dead fish have now been pulled out of the Oder in Germany alone.

The Berlin-Brandenburg state laboratory has now found elevated levels of pesticides in the Oder.

The Polish government therefore speaks of false reports from Germany.

Fish deaths in the Oder: Poland contradicts findings from Germany

On Saturday (August 20), the Brandenburg Environment Ministry announced that high concentrations of a pesticide containing the active ingredient 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid had been found in the Oder.

The active ingredient is used, for example, to combat weeds.

However, the detected dose is not directly lethal to the fish.

The Ministry of the Environment continues to assume that there are several causes for the environmental disaster.

Poland's government contradicts these findings and accused Germany of spreading fake news.

"Attention, another fake news is being spread in Germany!!!

pesticides and herbicides.

In Poland, the substance was tested and found to be below the limit of quantification, ie with no effects on fish or other animals and no link to fish kills,” Poland's Environment Minister Anna Moskwa wrote on Twitter on Saturday evening.

Poland criticizes Germany: "Unjustified attack on agriculture"

The substances were not detected in fish, Moskva said in another tweet, "An unjustified attack on agriculture.

First industry, now agriculture?

What's next?” Poland's national conservative PiS government is not only under pressure domestically because Polish authorities were hesitant to react to the first indications of the fish kill.

Criticism also came from Germany that Polish authorities had not complied with the internationally agreed information chains.

Representatives of the PiS repeatedly responded with anti-German tones - and with attacks on the Polish opposition.

(sf/dpa)

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2022-08-23

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