Aral Sea Tragedy

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Description and Case study of the Aral Sea disaster for A2 Geography

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Aral Sea Tragedy

  1. 1. The Aral Sea<br />A2 – Water Conflicts<br />
  2. 2. What is it<br />Once the world’s 4th largest inland sea – 68,000km2<br />located in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan (both countries were part of the former Soviet Union)<br />Historically a saline lake<br />Fed by the Amu Darya and Syr Darya rivers<br />
  3. 3. What’s wrong with it?<br />In the late 1950’s the soviet govt diverted much of the Amu and Syr Darya rivers to irrigate crops.<br />By 2007 the sea had shrunk by 90% and split into several lakes<br />It’s level had fallen 40m<br />The shoreline has receded up to 120 km from its former shore<br />Deemed an environmental catastrophe<br />
  4. 4. However…<br />In the past it has completely disappeared and also been far bigger than it was in 1960<br />The controversy about the Aral Sea Region arises because the change is human induced<br />Possibly on purpose<br />
  5. 5. The difference<br />
  6. 6. So Who Are The Players?<br />Former soviet govt <br />The fishing community <br />Local Residents<br />Uzbekistan govt<br />Scientists<br />Kazakhstan farmers<br />International Economists<br />Water Engineers<br />
  7. 7. Activity 1<br />In groups draw up a matrix of the following issues and Brainstorm how the problems of the Aral Sea may be affecting them:<br />Human health <br />Agriculture <br />Fishing industry <br />Ecosystems <br />
  8. 8. The Video<br />Watch the film and take notes on the various perspectives depending on which group you are in.<br />Farmers<br />Government<br />Fishermen<br />Environmentalists<br />
  9. 9. Activity<br />In your groups formulate ideas on how you may argue your cases for what has gone wrong or right for you.<br />
  10. 10. Finally<br />Research the issues surrounding the Salton Sea<br />Write 400 words on the following title:<br />‘The issues facing both the Aral and Salton Seas are solely to do with anthropogenic mismanagement’ Discuss.<br />

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