In DepthWATER RESOURCES

Iraq confronts a new enemy—the Persian Gulf

Science  08 Jan 2016:
Vol. 351, Issue 6269, pp. 111-112
DOI: 10.1126/science.351.6269.111

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Summary

Iraq, already struggling with war, poverty, and sectarian strife, faces a new threat. The loss of water in the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, which begin in Turkey and flow into the Persian Gulf, endangers farmers, city dwellers, and the famous Mesopotamian marshes that are home to a rich ecosystem. Turkish dams, a long drought, and water mismanagement mean that little freshwater reaches southern Iraq. As a result, the saltwater of the gulf is slowly working its way inland, with important ramifications for Iraq's future. University of Basra researchers are sounding the alarm.

  • * in Basra, Iraq