MILAN Venice~ On Sunday morning, when residents of Venice woke up, they were greeted by a peculiar sight: a section of water in the principal waterway of the city appeared to have turned a bright green color. The officials in charge of the area have taken water samples and initiated an immediate inquiry.
There is a great deal of conjecture on the possible reasons why the water in the area of the well-known Rialto Bridge became a different color. Various explanations have been proposed, such as the accidental discharge of color or a protest by environmentalists. It was stated in the Italian media that the local police were looking through surveillance footage to see whether or not the release was a stunt timed to coincide with the Volgalonga regatta that was taking place this weekend.
Maurizio Vesco, who works for the Regional Agency for Environmental Protection, recently gave an interview to the Italian newspaper La Repubblica. In the interview, he stated that preliminary research suggested that the green patch was likely produced by the emission of fluorescein, which is a harmless dye that is widely used to measure the flow of water.
Although this material is not particularly unusual, Mr. Vesco stated that the typical dosage was one spoonful of dye powder. Despite this, the size of the patch suggested that at least one kilogram had been put in the waters. In an interview with La Repubblica, he stated, “I find it hard to believe that it was an accident… and that a kilo of fluorescein was casually released into the canal.” Many people who use social media claimed that the photographs coming out of Venice reminded them of a trick that was pulled in 1968 by the Argentine artist Nicolás Garcá Uriburu. In that stunt, the artist dyed the waters of the Grand Canal green in order to bring attention to environmental concerns.
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