News

Originally one of the world’s first health resorts, the Dead Sea in Israel has a far from healthy future as its water levels continue to decline. In fact, it has been estimated that since the 1950s the water levels have dropped about 130 feet. The dangerously low level has been attributed to an imbalance between the amount of incoming and outgoing water. Known also as the Sea of Salt, separating Israel to the west and Jordan to the east, the lake’s surface and shores are 1407 feet below the level making it earth’s lowest elevation on land. The problem of the annual declining rate is due largely to the reduction of inflowing of water from the Jordan River. This has been attributed to the increased current consumption of water within the Jordan River water and irrigation drainage basin. Water resources in the region are scarce and affect Israel, the West Bank, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan that are located within and bordering the basin. The sea is called ‘dead’ because its high salinity prevents aquatic organisms such as fish and aquatic plants from living in it. -- By European Pressphoto Agency

An abandoned tourist Boat shipwreck lying at the Dead Sea coastal resort near Ein Gedi, Israel. According to media reports, the Dead Sea water level is dropping with an average of 3 feet per year since the first water level measurements in 1927. (Abir Sultan/EPA)