Operation targets fish-killing golden algae in canal

Soldiers and fire-fighters have taken part in an operation to neutralise golden algae in the Gliwice Canal in southern Poland, the environment minister has said.

The algae are believed to have been responsible for an environmental disaster that hit the River Odra last year, which killed hundreds of tonnes of fish and other river life.

Golden alga is now present in oxbow lakes by the Odra and in the Gliwice Canal, which feeds into the river. It has not been found in the Vistula or other Polish rivers.

"As announced, we are starting the neutralisation of the golden algae in the Gliwice Canal," Anna Moskwa said in a tweet on Monday.

She added that: "The operation is being carried out with the participation of the Polish Army, the State Fire Service and the services of the Opole region. Scientific supervision is carried out by the Institute of Environmental Protection and the National Research Institute in cooperation with the General Directorate for Environmental Protection."

The operation saw the release of a hydrogen peroxide solution, which can stop the growth of algae, into the canal.

Tests will later be taken to measure the water quality to see if fish have been affected.