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Caspian sea level may drop 9-18 meters



Caspian sea may follow the fate of Aral



22.Dec.20 12:36 PM
By Shawn Highstraw
Photo caspiansealrrc.com

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 Caspian sea level may drop 9-18 meters
The water level of the Caspian Sea may fall to the end of this century 9 to 18 meters. German and Dutch scientists calculated this, the University of Utrecht reports. The large drop in water levels has a huge impact on ecosystems and can also cause tension between neighbouring countries.

The Caspian Sea, with 371,000 square kilometres, is the largest inland lake in the world and is completely enclosed by land. Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan border on it. The lake contains salt water and the water level falls a few centimetres a year since the 1990s.

This decline will continue more rapidly in the coming decades, calculated by the Dutch earth scientist Frank Wesselgh of Utrecht University together with researchers from the Universities of the German cities Giessen and Bremen.

The water level is falling faster and faster due to increased evaporation and the increasing lack of sea ice in winter. This has consequences for the "unique ecosystem on the ground, with migratory birds, sturgeons and the endemic Caspian seal to be found there, which gets its pups on the Ice", concludes the research. Kazakhstan, as well as other countries of region put Caspian seal under state protection. It happened after years of intensive works of Central Asian Ecology Institute, Caspian Seal Research and Rehabilitation Center, Aselle Tasmagambetova, activists, scientists and volunteers.

"This is about 9 metres - in the most optimistic scenario," Wesselingh says. In the worst-case scenario, the water level falls by 18 metres at the end of the century, with the Caspian Sea losing a third of its surface.

The decline in sea levels can also lead to tensions in the region. Azerbaijan, Russia, Iran, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan must reach new agreements on fishing rights and land borders with lower sea levels.

Scientists argue for an international task force to deal with emerging problems in good time, under the leadership of the United Nations climate programme.




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