Artist Paints Polluted River Green for World Water Day

Riachuelo River in Buenos Aires Dyed Green by Nicolas Garcia Uriburu Photo

Photos: Greenpeace Argentina.

As you may know, yesterday was World Water Day, and many activities took place around the world to raise awareness about the importance of water. In perhaps one of the most peculiar ones, acclaimed Argentine artist Nicolas Garcia Uriburu joined forces with Greenpeace Argentina to paint Buenos Aires' Riachuelo, one of the most polluted rivers in the world, green.Garcia Uriburu is well known for his environmental concerns and has been doing different performances in waterways for more than 40 years. His first one was in 1968, when he painted Venice's Grand Canal to raise awareness about its contamination.

He has also colored fountains in Paris, Nice, Belgium, Tokio, and Sao Paulo, to name a few.

The substance he uses are of course harmless and biodegradable for the waterways. According to Greenpeace, "it's a yellow water-soluble liquid that produces a green fluorescent color when in touch with alkaline solutions. It's used in ophthalmology to examine the eye's blood vessels, to check for alterations in the corneal epithelium and in the tear duct, and to prove the permeability of tear ducts, among other studies."

Nicolas Garcia Uriburu with Greenpeace Painting the River Green Photo

For this edition of World Water Day, Uriburu joined Greenpeace Argentina to color the Riachuelo river in order to condemn the government's lack of action against the rampant contamination of the water.

The Supreme Court of Argentina has demanded the national and city government to heal the basin, but according to the organization no actions with clear goals and deadlines have been taken.

Another Angle on the action by Nicolas Garcia Uriburu and Greenpeace Photo

It's hard to say if this will have some impact in the governments, but at least the press can make some people pay attention to a place nobody wants to look at in Buenos Aires.

"I've been trying to alarm people against the contamination of rivers and oceans for 40 years, and it's through my artistic performances that I've turned my work into a sort of alert. Today, with more motivations than 40 years ago, I still condemn water contamination and our savage destruction of the planet's reserves. A planet that our blind omnipotence sees as endless and indestructible," were artist Nicolas Garcia Uriburu wise words during the action.

Riachuelo River in Buenos Aires Dyed Green by Nicolas Garcia Uriburu Photo

More on World Water Day actions and news:
Annie Leonard Releases New Video on Story of Bottled Water for World Water Day
It's World Water Day! Give a Hand to 8 Top H2O Activists
Celebrate World Water Day March 22: Learn How a Small Denver-Based Non-Profit Brought Water to 105,000 Nicaraguans

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