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Red soil run-off colors waters off Henoko after heavy rain

Date Posted: 2003-04-18

Extraordinarily heavy rainfall last Friday and Saturday turned the ocean off the coast of Henoko in Nago City completely red. The red soil was brought to the ocean by the Henoko River, and almost completely covered the shallow waters inside the reef in the area.

Opinions on where the red soil originated vary. Yuji Kinjo, the chairman of the local Environment Protection Association, suspects there are many sources. “There are several construction sites that have started in the area, and almost all have contributed to this red soil pollution,” Kinjo says. He adds that the problem is not where it comes from, but what it will do to the ocean environment. “This will adversely affect the local environment; fish seaweeds and other marine life will die. That will turn away tourists who come to see the natural beauty of the ocean here. Everyone loses,” Kinjo stated.

To the contrary, the Nago City City office has no doubt where the red soil came from. The only site where it can come from is the helipad construction site within Camp Schwab,” a Nago City official concludes.

“There is a construction project expanding an industrial high school in Henoko, but they do an excellent job to control pollution there. They collect all red soil and then filter the water, so this soil is not from that construction site,” the official noted.

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