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Instagram turns Russian power plant dump into ‘Siberian Maldives’

Instagram turns Russian power plant dump into ‘Siberian Maldives’

An unbelievably beautiful lake with electric blue water like at a tropical resort just popped up in the heart of Siberia. And Instagram ‘influencers’ are flocking to see it.

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Sadly, taking a dip is not an option as it’s the ash dump of a power plant.

The stunning color is a result of a chemical reaction, with calcium salts and oxides of various metals dissolved in the water. It’s a rather common sight at the disposal areas of power plants that operate on brown coal.

And it quickly became a commonly shared picture on Instagram, after the exotic-looking lake was discovered just a ten-minute drive from the city of Novosibirsk, home to almost 1.5 million people.

Bloggers have been sharing numerous photos, selfies and videos from the shores of the so-called “Siberian Maldives” in recent weeks. They referred to the ash dump as a “must see fairytale location, which fills your soul,” while also acknowledging that it smelled like washing powder.

Some also called it a “deadly lake,” mentioning poisonous vapor, dried up plants and blue seagulls. The reservoir was even compared to Chernobyl in the wake of a recent hit TV show from HBO about the 1986 nuclear accident in the USSR.

The power plant, which had dug the lake for its own needs, wasn’t too happy about all the hype. Its operator was forced to issue a statement on social media to dispel various rumors, while at the same time trying to drive the amateur photographers away.

The Siberian Generating Company said that there was no radiation in the area, as proven by two independent laboratories. The water also wasn’t poisonous, but it could cause an allergic reaction after contact with human skin, due to its high mineralization.

The company also warned that the reservoir had a muddy bottom, which could make getting out of the water without help problematic. The man-made lake is quite deep, reaching down to two meters, which also contributes to its unique color.

So far, there have been no reports of deaths or injuries, while bloggers reported that getting to the lake became problematic due to the administration trying to restrict access to the site. However, new photos with the same blue water in the background keep appearing on the internet.