Red Waters seen in the Country’s Coast

Photo by Khaleej Times/file

Fishermen in Ras Al Khaimah reported sights of red water nearly 8 to 12 miles off the emirate’s coast.

“Red patches” have no negative impact on marine life, the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) assured.

“The red tide phenomenon appears twice a year, and had no negative impact on the marine environment.”

This phenomenon know as red tide or algae blooms, was first seen in UAE regional waters in 2008. The ministry of Environment and Water, now Ministry of Climate Change and Environment, warned against swimming or fishing in the affected areas.

The ministry explained that specialists were ordered to monitor and collect samples of the affected water in the Arabian Gulf off RAK’s coast. Furthermore, satellite images collected showed biological activity in country’s regional waters. UAE Coast Guards confirms that there are “red patches’ in the area.

“Algae blooms reduce the amount of oxygen in the water and greatly affects the marine environment, including fish dying. Certain types of algae can also produce dangerous toxins. They occur under certain conditions, such as when large amounts of sunlight combine with increased nutrients from effluent water,”Dr. Ghais said.

The red tides occur naturally and this is caused by the rapid growth of phytoplankton, he added.

Record shows that red tide appeared in RAK on September 2008 and spread mostly on the country’s coast. It then appeared in February of the following year and destroyed huge amounts of marine creatures.