Darling River sees NSW-first oxygenation trial

Menindee Fish Kill

In a bid to lessen the risk of more fish dying at Menindee due to low water oxygen levels, gas and engineering company BOC is working with WaterNSW on a NSW-first oxygenation trial.

BOC are using Linde technology to pump oxygenated water into one section of the river with the aim of boosting dissolved oxygen levels downstream.

Early trial data indicated positive changes in downstream dissolved oxygen levels, says BOC.

The company’s oxygenation systems have successfully oxygenated river systems in Australia to enhance water quality and biodiversity for over two decades, says the company, including the Swan and Canning Rivers in WA and the Murray River in SA.

BOC UK has also provided oxygenation of London’s River Thames in the United Kingdom.

Head of BOC Australia, Theo Martin, said BOC was proud to work with WaterNSW on this NSW-first trial and deploy what he called its innovative Linde SOLVOX dropin oxygenation technology, to improve biodiversity and water quality along one of Australia’s longest rivers.

“The Darling River is a crucial part of our state’s biodiversity and it’s exciting BOC expertise is helping to boost biodiversity in regional NSW,” said Mr Martin. “We are working closely with our communities, including WaterNSW, to ensure this innovative trial delivers significant improvements in oxygen levels at Menindee.

“This, and other similar BOC technology, is successfully oxygenating river systems in the Swan and Canning Rivers in Western Australia and the Murray River in South Australia to improve water quality and biodiversity,” Mr Martin said.

In recent years, large-scale fish deaths have occurred in the Darling River due to low dissolved oxygen levels caused by weather conditions and changes in local waterways.

Linde SOLVOX technology is described as a microbubble oxygenation system that is easy and flexible to use in open and closed aquaculture systems.

Oxygen flow rates and operational modes can be controlled remotely, significantly improving the ability to respond to real-time changes in water quality to reduce risk to fish health, the company claims.

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