What’s the red dye in the Shoalhaven River?

May 12, 2023 9:16 am in by

The UNSW Water Research Laboratory (WRL) is working with NSW Food Authority on an assessment of sewage overflows on oyster leases in 10 estuaries across the NSW coast.

As part of the assessment, they’ve done a field dye tracer experiment on the Shoalhaven / Crookhaven River.

The dye used was Rhodamine WT, a fluorescent, red dye which is commonly used to understand the transport of pollution in rivers, estuaries or the ocean.

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Shoalhaven Council emphasised the dye is not toxic to aquatic ecosystems, and it does not cause stains on boats or vessels that pass through the dye plume.

The dye was only visible for a couple of hours following its release if you noticed it while out and about near Greenwell Point and Shoalhaven Heads.