It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Aral Sea is going dry and will cause a major geopolitical disaster! The huge area in central Asia will become a desert and 40 million people will be displaced! Not just because of the Sea's going dry but because of overall climate change in the area.
The Aral Sea North of Afghanistan, formerly the largest inland body of water is now 95% gone, dried up. Forget that efforts to save the lake have been somewhat successful, in fact the lake is nearly dry.
The lake is an inland body with no outlet. So all the agricultural fertilizers, pesticides and chemicals extensively used in cotton production upriver are now on the lake bottom. Dust storms carry the salts and pollution over the countryside. Because the lake has gone dry the surrounding area is more arid and hotter so crops need increasingly larger amounts for irrigation.
Increased irrigation draws larger amounts of water from the 2 rivers supplying the Aral Sea to the north and the south.
But the biggest problem is what will happen 15 years or so in the future. The glaciers in the Pamir Mountains to the east are melting due to increased temperatures and arid conditions. The glaciers are the source of the rivers so when they are gone the entire region will be without a water supply. 40 million people live in the area and will be forced to relocate.
The options for relocation are 3 directions. South to Afghanistan, which is not an option. East to the Chinese desert area is not an option. Or north to Russia's Kazakhstan which is possible but presently Russia is completely unable to absorb 40 million people.