Shrinking Aral Sea An Environmental Disaster

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Shrinking Aral Sea An Environmental Disaster

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There are many environmental disaster has been produced by human intervention in the working of nature on this planet. Shrinking Aral sea is one of them. The question is where is all this going to end? The Aral sea that is situated in Central Asia between the southern part of Kazakhstan and Northern Uzbekistan until the mid 20th century was one of the world's largest lake in the world which is no longer the case.

Before the 1960 two major rivers Syr Darya and Amu Darya rivers flowed into the basin of the Aral and created the pool of water that made Aral sea one of the largest lake in the world. But in 1960 Soviet Union made a diversion of the water from these rivers on the plains of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan to promote agriculture. This diversion made the irrigation grow in the region but substantially dropped the flow of water into Aral sea. The Aral sea which once used to be livelihood for fishermen is no longer serves the purpose. The salty water of the sea is now hugely polluted with fertilizers and pesticides. The use of chemical in the field and that dust going into Aral sea has created health issues for the public in the area too.

Only in the 1990 when the sea was on the verge of extinction and created allot of public and environment issue the decision to divide the sea into two parts were taken. In a last-ditch effort to save some of the lake, Kazakhstan built a dam between the northern and southern parts of the Aral Sea. Completed in 2005, the dam was basically a death sentence for the southern Aral Sea, which was judged to be beyond saving. Between 2005 and 2006, the water levels in that part of the lake rebounded significantly and very small increases are visible throughout the rest of the time period. The differences in water colour are due to changes in sediment.

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