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(NaturalNews) For the first time in 600 years, the eastern portion of the Aral Sea has dried up. The Asian freshwater lake once teamed with fish and wildlife, ships and sailboats, but now it is choked dry, drained of every last drop, the bottom showing, flaking off with pesticide residue that now kicks up as dust in the wind. Decades of diverting water for irrigation purposes has led the Aral Sea to its catastrophic end — a barren wasteland.

Aral Sea expert Philip Micklin reported the news to NASA: “It is likely the first time it has completely dried in 600 years, since medieval desiccation associated with diversion of Amu Darya [river] to the Caspian Sea.”

The dried-up Aral Sea is a lesson to be learned in irrigation, farming and water conservation, but will countries around the world listen to its legacy? Is Lake Mead in Nevada, USA, on the same course? What about Lake Powell, which is upriver from Lake Mead? Are these two freshwater lakes also on the path to extinction?

Aral Sea once teemed with lakeside communities, fisheries, farms; is now nothing more than a cesspit of pesticide runoff

Over the last 50 years, the eastern Aral Sea experienced a rapid decline in water due to robust irrigation practices. The slow drainage combined with the latest drought acted like a giant straw, slurping out the last remnants of water.

Written by L.J. Devon
Read more at Natural News

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