The Aral Sea lies between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan and was once one of the four largest lakes in the world. It is now home to one of the world's most notorious ship graveyards.
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The Aral Sea lies between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan and was once one of the four largest lakes in the world. It has been shrinking at an alarming rate since the mid-20th Century. Now only 10 – 15 per cent of its original size, it has split into several smaller bodies of water and found notoriety for its ship graveyards symbolizing the collapse of an industry.
The middle of the desert is probably the last place on earth you'd expect to find a flotilla of abandoned ships stranded nearly 100 miles from the nearest shoreline. The story starts back in the 1980s, when Mo'ynaq was a thriving fishing village situated on an inland lake. Then the USSR diverted the water to irrigate massive cotton fields and the lake dried up-- leaving Mo'ynaq's boats high and dry (and the villagers with no way to make a living).
Aral Sea Once one of the four largest lakes in the world, today the Aral Sea is mostly an arid desert strewn with rusty old ghost ships, a reminder of the lake's former volume. Since 1960, the lake has been steadily shrinking thanks primarily to irrigation projects started by the former Soviet Union, which diverted the rivers which fed it. Today, the Aral Sea is only 10 percent of its former size. The region's fishing industry and ecosystem have been devastated, and the tragedy has been....
The Rusting and Abandoned Ships of the Aral Sea – Abandoned Playgrounds