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The Aral Sea Water Transfer Disaster Created by Josh Mellits and Natalie Lazaroff Where is the Aral Sea? The Aral Sea is located in central Asia between Kazakhistan (Borat’s homeland) and Uzbekistan (Milana’s homeland). History of the Aral Sea

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the aral sea water transfer disaster

The Aral Sea Water Transfer Disaster

Created by

Josh Mellits and Natalie Lazaroff

where is the aral sea
Where is the Aral Sea?

The Aral Sea is located in central Asia between Kazakhistan (Borat’s homeland) and Uzbekistan (Milana’s homeland).

history of the aral sea
History of the Aral Sea
  • In 1918 Russia decided that the two rivers which fed the Aral Sea, the Amu Darya and the Syr Darya, would be diverted to irrigate the desert.
  • Russia hoped to grow rice, melons, cereal, and especially cotton.
  • Construction began in the 1930s, much of which were poorly built, letting water leak out or evaporate.
  • Was an important mode of transportation
  • The Aral Sea was the fourth largest lake in the world.
aftermath
AFTERMATH
  • “Extreme shrinkage of the once abundant Sea has altered the climate and the livelihood of millions of people” (The Water Page)
  • The ecosystem in the areas surrounding the Aral Sea has been greatly affected
  • Desertification occurred unexpectedly
  • “An estimated 60,000 people abandoned their fishing livelihoods”
  • Of the region’s 500 species of birds, 200 species of mammals, and 100 species of fish most have perished over the past four decades.”
aftermath cont
AFTERMATH cont.
  • Aral region pesticides have been spread all over the world
  • “Salt and pesticide chemicals have seeped into groundwater and caused health disasters and further complications for agriculture.”
  • “Polluted water runs down into lowland reservoirs causing secondary salinization and making irrigation less effective. “
  • The overall health of the people of the Aral Sea region has decreased
current situation
Current Situation
  • The sea's surface area has shrunk by approximately 60%, and its volume by 80%.
  • In 1960, the Aral Sea was the world's fourth-largest lake, with an area of approximately 68,000 km² and a volume of 1100 km³; by 1998, it had dropped to 28,687 km², and eighth-largest.
  • Over the same time period its salinity has increased from about 10 g/l to about 45 g/l. As of 2004, the Aral Sea's surface area was only 17,160 km², 25% of its original size, and still contracting.
  • In 1987 the Aral Sea split into two separate bodies of water: the North Aral Sea and the South Aral sea
  • In 2003 the South Aral Sea divided into eastern and western basins
is there an end in sight
Is There an End in Sight?
  • “The really big problem about the Aral Sea disaster is that it can't be prevented. The only way to stop it is for Uzbekistan to stop producing cotton, but it can't because its economy depends on it. One thing they could do to slow the process down is at least close the canals' tops because, before the water gets to the fields, about half of it evaporates.”
  • As of now no one is able to provide a solution to fix the Aral Sea disaster…what would you do ?
bibliography
Bibliography
  • http://www.africanwater.org/aral.htm
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aral_Sea