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Why Are Scientists Dyeing the Ocean Pink?

In this video, you can watch the scientists in action as they release the pink dye and deploy drifters, drones, and other instruments to track the movement of freshwater plumes into the coastal ocean.

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Why is the ocean — and this team of researchers — looking pretty in pink? For science! Scientists at UC San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography have launched the PiNC (Plumes in Nearshore Conditions) experiment to study the coastal zone where a river meets the ocean. Using a non-toxic, environmentally safe pink dye and a suite of instruments, researchers released the dye in the mouth of the Los Peñasquitos Lagoon at Torrey Pines State Beach near San Diego, Calif. in the winter of 2023.

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