The Dead Sea is Dying
The Dead Sea, a salt lake bordered by Jordan to the east and Israel and Palestine to the west, is drying out, according to the environmentalist group EcoPeace Middle East.
CNN says the salt lake is shrinking under the heat of the Middle Eastern sun, about 3.3 feet annually.
Why is this happening?
Many ruled out that human actions are largely to blame for the slow demise of the landlocked salt lake in the region.
Moritz Kustner, a photographer in a his series entitled “The Dying Dead Sea,” said, “It’s not just like one country is punishing the Dead Sea; it’s more like the whole region.”
The Dead Sea is eight or nine times saltier than the oceans of the world. Experts say the water is so dense and mineral rich that it doesn’t even feel like normal water. It is more like an olive oil mixed with sand. And, it is a popular tourist destination because nobody will sink in it.
The future of the Dead Sea is in doubt. Experts say, the popular tourist destination began to shrink in the 1960s because some of the water sources it relied upon were diverted.
Aside from that, mineral extraction industries are partly to blame for the water level decline. The Dead Sea’s minerals have been hailed for their therapeutic properties. Some of these minerals are found in cosmetics and other consumer products.
To save the salt lake from its demise, Israel and Jordan signed a $900 million deal to stabilize Dead Sea water levels in 2015. The deal includes building a canal from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea. In this way, both nations can supply water to Israel and Jordan and at the same time be able to pump much-needed water.
In addition, the sad news about the Dead Sea has drawn concern from environmentalists as well. In fact, earlier this month, nearly 30 marathon swimmers from different parts of the world swam the nine-mile Dead Sea stretch from Jordan to Israel. The effort was launched to bring awareness to the falling water levels.