The fourth largest lake in the world is disappearing before our indifferent eyes and we continue to watch this eco-catastrophe indifferently. Are we really so stupid and irresponsible as to allow it ?! Obviously yes.
What are the facts? A record five-fold reduction in the volume of the stagnant lake – from 66 thousand square kilometers / which is the ton of Ireland – for comparison /, today it is five times less. All its inhabitants are in danger of extinction, but even their entry in the Red Book is unlikely to protect them, as the erasure of this sea continues at a rapid pace. We can hardly guess what will happen next, but our behavior is still careless with this huge environmental problem. Where will these 11 species of fish, 23 species of animals and 35 species of birds for which the Aral Sea is their home live?
But how do you get here?
The Aral Sea is fed by the waters of two rivers – Sardarya and Amu Darya. Decades ago, the government decided to grow cotton in the nearby plains, which, however, required a lot of water. Thus, the waters of the Amu Darya River, which flows into the Aral Sea and passes through three countries, are diverted for economic purposes, and this has logically led to its drying up. But it’s not just that – the chemicals that people use there for a better harvest and used to be at the bottom of the sea are now on the surface. The fishing livelihood of the population has disappeared, ships have not passed there for a long time, and soon its last inhabitants will leave. The Aral Sea is poisoned, just as the surrounding animals are poisoned. Traces of these chemicals have been found in the blood of penguins from Antarctica and in the forests of Norway. This is an ecological catastrophe, not just a problem of a country. Nature gives us a clear sign that we are all connected and must approach the problem very quickly, albeit very late.
This is currently one of the biggest disasters on the planet, but unfortunately it is not the only one. The fate of the Aral Sea is currently repeating the Caspian Sea. All this is due to poor water management. However, their consequences are not just a change in the map, but also a change in biodiversity. Because the used fertilizers and pesticides have poisoned the soil, and the already desert part of the sea, which was the bottom, makes the dust in the area very high, and the morbidity of the local people – even greater.
If the worst case scenario with the Aral and Caspian Seas happens, then the next negative news will be from our Black Sea…
Our inaction at the moment is criminal. Not just for our contemporaries, but for those after us. The appeal of the Aral Sea is to realize. That the destruction of resources will not lead to anything good for us afterwards. Whether humanity still has time, only God knows.