Aral Sea Rehabilitation with Irtysh Imports

  • Roelof D. SchuilingEmail author
  • Viorel Badescu
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)


Many years ago a major macro-project was proposed by Russian scientists to divert water from major Siberian rivers and use this water to irrigate the steppes of Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. At that time the plan was dismissed as megalomaniac, and it was proclaimed that it would have dire implications for the climate. Since then the runoffs from the two rivers that feed into the Aral Sea, the Syr Darya and the Amu Darya have been used to irrigate the steppes. This has made Uzbekistan (and to a lesser degree Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan) one of the leading cotton producers in the world, at the cost, however, of causing the Aral Sea (which is an endorheic lake) to evaporate and transform into a dusty salt plain. Ironically, it has led indeed to a climate change for the worse, as the winter rains have become scarcer in the region.


Tunnel Boring Machine Siberian River Municipal Waste Water Intake Point Irtysh River 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Utrecht UniversityUtrechtThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Polytechnic University of BucharestBucharestRomania

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