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Europe heatwave: Tons of fish found dead in French lake as water temperature nears 29C

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The remains of a fish lies on the parched Loire River bed at Ancenis, western France on August 11, 2020
The remains of a fish lies on the parched Loire River bed at Ancenis, western France on August 11, 2020   -   Copyright  SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS / AFP
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Nearly ten tons of fish have been found dead in the Enghien-les-Bains lake in Val-d'Oise, northern France, due to the recent heatwave that struck the region, officials explained on Friday.

Jean-Pierre Enjalbert, president of SIARE, the joint union in charge of the managing the local waters, said that “the heat and the lack of a clear, clean water supply” resulted in a decrease in oxygen in the lake, causing the death of the fish.

The level of this artificial lake of 40 hectares, one meter deep on average, has fallen by nearly 20 cm, and the temperature of the water neared 29 degrees during the heatwave, according to the Enghien city council.

Authorities have now set up a water oxygenation system and planned an upstream filtering basin.

Animalist association Paris Animaux Zoopolis (PAZ) said this disaster was "predictable", and had previously called for such a pumping system to be developed, given the upcoming heatwave.

PAZ is now worried a "second disaster" may involve local birds due to the current poor quality of the water.

The lake is known for hosting species like carps, roaches, pikes and eels.