The Aralkum is the result of an ecological disaster which caused the virtual disappearance of the Aral Sea. Lunar landscapes and sand dunes now cover an area of 50,000 km2, which were submerged under 20 metres of water in 1970.
Is the Aral Sea toxic?
Ships without a sea. … Once the fourth-largest lake in the world, the Aral Sea in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan is now a toxic desert littered with rusting ships and plagued with lung-choking dust storms.
Is the Aral Sea a desert?
The Aralkum Desert is a desert that has appeared since 1960 on the seabed once occupied by the Aral Sea. It lies to the south and east of what remains of the Aral Sea in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.
How long is the Aral Sea?
Why we destroyed the 4th largest lake?
Formerly the fourth largest lake in the world with an area of 68,000 km2 (26,300 sq mi), the Aral Sea began shrinking in the 1960s after the rivers that fed it were diverted by Soviet irrigation projects.
Does the Aral Sea still exist?
Today, the Aral Sea does not exist. There are, instead, two distinct bodies of water: the North Aral Sea (also known as the “Small Sea,” in Kazakhstan) and the South Aral Sea (in Uzbekistan).
What sea has disappeared?
In 2014, the eastern lobe of the South Aral Sea completely disappeared. Water levels in summer 2018 were not as low as they might have been, following a round of seasonal snowmelt in the spring. As the Aral Sea has dried up, fisheries and the communities that depended on them collapsed.
What lives in the Aral Sea?
Two dozen species thrived in its waters, including caviar-rich sturgeon, pike perch, and silver carp, known locally as fat tongue. The sea spread over more than 26,000 square miles, and ships could travel 250 miles from the northern port of Aralsk, in Kazakhstan, to the southern harbor of Muynak in Uzbekistan.
Is the Aral Sea getting bigger?
Another 13 km long dam was built in 2004, as well as several hydraulic installations on the river bed that were financed by the World Bank. The North Aral Sea increased its level by four meters in only six months, increasing its size in one third in one year and recovering part of its aquatic fauna.
Why is Aral Sea not a lake?
Sandwiched between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, the Aral Sea is actually a lake, albeit a salty, terminal one. It is salty because evaporation of water from the lake surface is greater than the amount of water being replenishing through rivers flowing in. It is terminal because there is no outflowing river.
What can we learn from the Aral Sea?
By studying the changes in the Aral Sea, they will understand that: (1) lakes are affected by both the quantity and the quality of water that flows into them from rivers; (2) damming or diverting rivers, for irrigation and other purposes, can have a significant impact on the size and water quality of lakes; (3) the …
How can we fix the Aral Sea?
There is no work under way to restore the southern region. It has always looked like a lost cause. So Aladin says it will keep shrinking and getting saltier until only brine shrimp are left. Using less water to irrigate crops could restore the entire Aral Sea, says Micklin.
What is the deepest lake on Earth?
Lake Baikal (5,315 feet [1,620 meters])
Lake Baikal, in Siberia, holds the distinction of being both the deepest lake in the world and the largest freshwater lake, holding more than 20% of the unfrozen fresh water on the surface of Earth.
Who drained the Aral Sea?
By establishing a program to promote agriculture and especially that of cotton, Soviet government led by Khrouchtchev in the 1950s deliberately deprived the Aral Sea of its two main sources of water income, which almost immediately led to less water arriving to the sea.
What is the Aral Sea disaster?
The Aral Sea in the Soviet Union, formerly the world’s fourth largest lake in area, is disappearing. Between 1960 and 1987, its level dropped nearly 13 meters, and its area decreased by 40 percent. Recession has resulted from reduced inflow caused primarily by withdrawals of water for irrigation.