Fitzroy River turned yellow – residents urged to think before they tip

Nathan Johnston, Fitzroy Partnership for River Health Executive Officer is urging the community to consider what they put down the drain as it all reaches our waterways and can impact our precious freshwater and marine ecosystems.

On Monday 31 August 2015 Mr Johnston noticed a bright yellow-green stain on the Fitzroy River coming from a local urban drainpipe, which was thought to potentially be coolant from an automotive radiator.

Testing of the sample based on the UV-Viz spectrum analysis conducted by Fitzroy River Water confirmed it was almost certainly coolant.

“The colour of this contaminant provided a stark showcase of the link between our urban areas and local waterways,” Mr Johnston said.

“We urge local businesses and residents to think twice about where chemicals, oils, fertilisers and other products they use may end up,” he said.

“While this may only have been an isolated occurrence, each and every one of us play a part in the health of our local waterways, so let’s make sure that we consider the flow-on impacts to our waterways and the Great Barrier Reef, before we tip liquids down sinks and drains.”

Central Queenslanders can access the latest information on the health of local waterways from the Fitzroy Partnership for River Health website –

Fitzroy Partnership for River Health, formed in 2012, includes organisations from government, agriculture, resources, industry, research and community, all working to provide a more complete picture of river health in the Fitzroy Basin.


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