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Salton See Living Or Dying

2528 words - 10 pages

Salton Sea - Living or DyingThe Salton Sea is a naturally recurring salt lake, historically referred as Lake Cahuilla which has been cyclically reconstituted many times by the meandering of the Colorado River. This huge lake; California's largest lake, measuring 15 by 30 miles, and containing over 7.5 million acre-feet of water (Simon 1), shines with its beautiful smooth silver surface in the middle of Imperial Valley's wild desert. Salton Sea is beautiful but it's in a serious trouble. It's surface elevation, salinity and organic content is too high. Millions of fish and hundreds of thousands of birds have been constantly dying for last few years. The declining water quality if allowed to continue, will cause the Sea to be a further danger to wildlife, to people, and eventually to the whole Imperial Valley (DeBuys & Myers 239).There is no mutual agreement regarding to the future of Salton Sea. Some scholars think that saving Salton Sea is just impractical; they say that the lake should be taken over by nature and basically dry up. It is true that the most recent rebirth of the Lake in early 1900's, happened just by the accident, a human mistake in poorly designed canal. But also the truth is that the Salton Sea today it is not only a wild water gathered on the desert but also a very sophisticated ecosystem with 384 species of birds, about 200 millions introduced marine fish, and endless green, irrigated fields of citrus, dates, grapes and artichokes (Nijhuis 2). The Salton Sea for thousands of Imperial Valley residents is a work and food resource, beloved homeland and a source of many unforgettable memories about a wonderful recreation spot where children could play experiencing this magnificent miracle of constantly adopting nature under the pressure of human intervention. As time goes by the beauty of Salton Sea seems to disappear in the sadness of the deep, gray fog surrounding the lake each morning covering another thousands of new died Salton Sea's animals. There is no too much time left. The bell rings calling for help.We are responsible for the Salton Sea and its environment as we caused its origin. We must save this heart of our Valley otherwise the Salton Sea disaster will spread out like a cancer affecting the whole Imperial Valley environment.The Salton Sink at 227 feet below sea level is downhill almost everything (DeBuys & Myers 23) and being connected to the delta of Colorado River through several river corridors often got flooded by the river creating a number of temporary lakes; bands of the Cahuilla Tribe lived on the fish and birds from a prehistoric lake once 26 times as large as the Salton Sea (Nijhuis 2). In the late of 1800s inhabitants of the valley realized that the basin's fertile soil could be a perfect base for an agriculture empire if only they could bring the river on their land. They didn't waste time and in 1901 the private Colorado Development Co. cut the riverbank near Yuma in Arizona and brought water...

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