Lake Urmia water level reaches 3.35 billion cubic meters

TEHRAN, Oct. 06 (MNA) – The volume of the water at Lake Urmia, northwestern Iran, reached 5 million cubic meters during the last water year that ended on September 22.

Based on the data released by the Energy Ministry, the giant reservoir’s water level declined by 80 million cubic meters (down 2.33%) compared with the previous 365-day period (Sept. 22, 2018, till Sept. 22, 2019).

Accordingly, the lake’s level currently stands at an elevation of 1,271.27 meters above sea level, which is 3 centimeters less than the water level on the corresponding date of last year.

The lake is now covering some 2,807 square kilometers of land, which is 2,059 square kilometers less than a year before.

Shared between West Azarbaijan and East Azarbaijan provinces in northwestern Iran, Lake Urmia, was once the largest salt-water lake in the Middle East.

However, decades of long-standing drought spells and elevated hot summer temperatures that speed up evaporation as well as increased water demands in the agriculture sector shrank the lake drastically. In 1999 the volume of water which was at 30 billion cubic meters drastically decreased to half a billion cubic meters in 2013. Moreover, the lake’s surface area of 5,000 square kilometers in 1997 shrunk to one-tenth of that to 500 square kilometers in 2013.

MR/IRN84066561

News Code 164385

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