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Environment: 2 billion cubic meters of water will be transferred to Lake Orumieh

Source: Mehr News Agency

The Iranian Environmental Protection Organization announced on Wednesday that 2 billion cubic meters of water will be transferred to Lake Orumieh as part of the efforts to save the endangered body of water.

Lake Urmia (Orumieh) is a salt lake in northwestern Iran near Turkey. The lake is between the provinces of East Azarbaijan and West Azarbaijan, west of the southern portion of the similarly shaped Caspian Sea. It is the largest lake inside Iran, and the second salt water lake on earth, with a surface area of approximately 5,200 km square (2,000 mile square).

In line with the efforts to protect Iran's lakes, the organization has devised a local environmental plan to save Lake Orumieh, Mohammad-Javad Mohammadizadeh told the Mehr News Agency.

The administration has endorsed the plan and put it on its agenda, he added.

He also called on the people and NGOs to make efforts to raise environmental awareness about the condition of Lake Orumieh.

"Due to the critical condition of this body of water, a special committee has been established. Two vice presidents, the ministers of energy, housing and urban development, and agriculture, as well as three governors of the neighboring provinces are members of this committee," he stated.

Last week twenty Majlis lawmakers wrote a letter to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad calling for immediate action to prevent the environmental degradation of the body of water.

Experts have long warned that natural factors, coupled with human activity, would cause Lake Orumieh to dry up in the near future if nothing is done.

The surface of the salt water lake has recently turned red due to a phenomenon known as red tide.

Photos- Lake Urmia Turns Red

Lake Orumieh, which is located in northwestern Iran, has a surface area of approximately 5,200 square kilometers.

UNESCO has registered Lake Orumieh as a Biosphere Reserve, and it is listed as a wetland of international importance under the 1971 Ramsar Convention.

It is one of the largest natural habitats for the tiny Artemia, which is a genus of aquatic crustacean that serves as a food source for flamingos and other migratory birds.

... Payvand News - 08/26/10 ... --

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