'Orange river' investigation

The Environment Agency Wales are investigating the source of an incident that has 'discoloured' a 6.5 mile stretch of the River Rhymney. The river from Caerphilly to Machen has turned orange, possibly due to a discharge from an old mine.

Tests on damage from river discharge ongoing

Environment Agency Wales say that tests are being carried out to assess any damage that an orange coloured discharge found in the River Rhymney could have on water quality and wildlife.

They said samples will be taken and "if they confirm the pollution is caused by minewater, the Coal Authority will be asked to work with the Agency to try to improve the situation."

"Discharges of this type can occur many miles from the mine, as drainage tunnels were dug over long distances."

River discolouring 'likely from abandoned mine'

Environment Agency Wales say they have ruled out 'active industry' as the cause of the discolouring of a stretch of the River Rhymney near Caerphilly.

We’re confident the pollution comes from minewater possibly due to an underground collapse in an abandoned mine.

Minewater is often bright orange or brown because of the high levels of dissolved ferrous iron.

So far, we haven’t noticed any signs of fish in distress, but we’ll continue to monitor the situation closely until the pollution stops.

– Environment Agency Wales Spokesperson

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Investigation into cause of River Rhymney 'discolouring'

River Rhymney appearing orange
The river appears to have turned an orange colour Credit: Environment Agency Wales

The Environment Agency Wales are investigating the source of an incident that has 'discoloured' a 6.5 mile stretch of the River Rhymney.

The river from Caerphilly to Machen has turned orange, possibly due to a discharge from an old mine.

The pollution is thought to have entered the river from a brook near Bedwas House Industrial Estate, and officers have been at the site since early this morning.

They say the exact source will be difficult to find due to the complexities of the underground mine workings.