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Bacteria found in Irrigation Water at Loskop Dam
Loskop Dam, Mpumalanga, was built in 1938 to supply irrigation water to the agricultural sector, supporting an export market to the European Union valued at R1 billion a year. The dam is fed by the Olifants River which is described as “heavily contaminated”.

Due to high levels of nutrients, the algae growth was up to 15m long and drifted down irrigation canals, clogging up control gates and crop sprayers. Also present are permanent blooms of cyanobacteria which have been visible on the surface water since 2008.

Loskop Dam

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$723,000 to Rid Drinking Water of Rotten Taste Due to Algae - Cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, grow thick in Lake Erie, Grand Lake and other inland lakes each summer, feeding on phosphorus from manure that rain washes off farm fields. The algae can produce liver and nerve toxins that threaten people, pets and wildlife.


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