The Dead Sea

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by LSEGTALEXANDRA
Last updated 4 years ago

Discipline:
Science
Subject:
Environmental Studies
Grade:
2,3,4,5,6,7,8

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The Dead Sea

Did you know that the Dead Sea has the most dense salt water in the world? If you try to keep your feet on the sea floor your feet will come out from under you and you will float. The salty density makes it IMPOSSIBLE to drown. It’s amazing how high the density is!! Virtually anything can float in the super salty Dead Sea. The Dead Sea is a beneficial, historical destination that is disappearing quickly and needs to be saved. We as citizens of the world can save this amazing place.

The Dead Sea

The Dead Sea is located in southwest Asia in the Judean Desert. The Dead Sea is bordered by the countries Israel, Jordan, and Palestine. The Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth, 1,370 feet (422 meters) below sea level. The River Jordan empties into the sea which does not have an outlet. It is called a terminal lake which causes it’s exceedingly high concentrations of minerals. Thirty-three percent of the water is salts like potassium, sodium, and magnesium. In all there are twenty-six different minerals. This causes the Dead Sea to have high density and high buoyancy.

The climate is HOT!!! Year round, the weather is warm, dry, and sunny. The average temperature through the year ranges from 68 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter to 102 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer. The Dead Sea gets very little rainfall per year. It can range from 0.1 inch to 0.4 inch, less than 2 inches per year.

Location

Climate and Weather

Problem

The Dead Sea is quickly disappearing. There are several factors that threaten the Dead Sea. Due to the Climate, the Dead Sea has a high evaporation rate. The bordering countries are experiencing a population growth. Because of the population growth, there is a higher need for fresh water and natural resources. -There are two main factors that are causing the Dead Sea to disappear. Two thirds of the water loss is caused by water diversion. One third is due to extraction of minerals. In 1960, Israel built a pumping station on the banks of the Sea of Galilee, a tributary to the Dead Sea, to provide fresh water for a recent population boom. In the 1970’s Jordan and Syria began diverting water from the Jordan River as well. These waters are what replenishes the Dead Sea. Israeli and Jordanian companies pump water from the Dead Sea to extract its minerals. The companies make water pools about 3 feet deep and then evaporate it at a rate of 180 million gallons of water a day. Then, the extracted minerals become products like fertilizer, industrial metal, treatment chemicals, pesticides, flame retardants, and cosmetics. This extraction of minerals and diversion of water is causing sinkholes. In the past 15 years, 1,000 sinkholes have appeared. They have swallowed cities, roads, and buildings without warning.

How can we help?

Scientists want to improve this problem. They are trying to find ways to limit evaporation and are trying to stop the minerals from being extracted. Scientists are considering to channel water from the Mediterranean Sea or the Red Sea. However it is expensive, local tense political arguments are making it difficult, and it would still take twenty years to refill the Dead Sea. Israel, Jordan, and Syria strongly support unlimited water use for farmers. Scientists need more help.We can do our part to help with this problem. You can offer donations to the Global Nature Fund, who named the Dead Sea Threatened Lake of the Year in 2006. UNESCO, another organization, can give help to places it names Man and Biosphere Reserves. Also, do not buy any products that have ingredients that come from the Dead Sea. Cosmetic brands like AVANI and DANSHAR use the minerals. They are known for fading wrinkles and smoothing out rough or dry skin.

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By, Alexandra J.


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