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Current Affairs

Restoration of Lake Urmia

Date: 28 April 2021 Tags: Climate Change

Issue

Scientists and water experts from US and Iran are collaborating on a study to restore Lake Urmia of Iran.

 

Background

Lake Urmia is a massive saline water lake present in Iran that is currently facing destruction due to decreasing water levels.

 

Details

  • The lake has lost about 95 percent of its initial volume over last couple of decades. Decreasing water will increase salinity.

  • Increased salinity is threatening to the lake’s brine shrimp population and also birds such as flamingos that are dependent on shrimp for food.

  • The falling water levels have created land bridges that act as roads for mainland predators to threaten endangered mammal species living in lake islands.

  • The dry lake bed acts as a source of dust that affects large number of residents living in the basin areas of the lake.

 

Study on lake

  • The team collected data from 40 years to identify eight metrics that defines the health of the lake and its ecosystems.

  • The lake’s ecosystem services are interconnected and the varying levels of water will have effects on lake systems over time.

 

Lake Urmia

  • Lake Urmia is a saline lake in north-western Iran that is the largest lake in the Middle East.

  • The lake is remarkable for the extreme salinity of its waters. Since 1967 it has enjoyed the status of a wetland protected region.

  • The main rivers flowing into the lake are the Talkheh (?j?) River in the northeast and the twin rivers Zar?neh (Jag?tu) and S?m?neh (Tatavi) in the south.