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Tourists avoid sea around Ko Lan.

Tourists visiting Ko Lan, a small resort island off the coast of Pattaya, discovered on Saturday that the sea around the island had turned green and was generating a horrible odor, prohibiting many of them from entering the water to escape the blazing sun.

The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources informed the public that the sea is safe and that the plankton bloom will not affect fish or other marine creatures.

Apichai Ekvanakun, the department’s deputy director-general, said yesterday (Saturday) that he learned about the plankton bloom from a “We Love Pattaya” Facebook post, and that officials have been sent to examine sea water samples, which reveal that it is in Category 4.

This suggests that it is not yet detrimental to marine life.

He said that the sea turned green due to the blooming of the Dinoflagellates group of Noctiluca scintillans plankton, which does not contain hazardous compounds, and that the occurrence occurs only once a year for a few days. When there is no longer enough oxygen in the ocean, the plankton dies.

He blamed the plankton bloom on rain, which washed nutrient-rich sediments from sewers into the sea, and encouraged Pattaya residents and business owners not to dump untreated trash into the drainage system.

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