Caspian Sea: Largest Inland Body of Water
Oct 31, · Caspian Sea Largest Inland Body Of Water Live Science The Largest Enclosed Inland Body Of Water By Area Between Europe Caspian Sea Largest Inland Body Of Water Lake Coast Of The Sea At Sunset On S Caspian. Sep 06, · Step 2: Answer to the question "What is the world's largest inland body of water?" Caspian Sea - Americans might have felt a nice zip of patriotic pride when they read this question, thinking that it has to be one of the Great Lakes. Sadly, none of those come close. The honor belongs to Asia's Caspian Sea.
One characteristic that defines all inland seas is their bodt depths, with none reaching more than 2, feet in depth. Three Types of Water. An inland sea also known as an epeiric bovy or an epicontinental sea is a shallow sea that covers central areas of continents during periods of high sea level that what are the 2 branches of geography in marine transgressions.
Seas are smaller than oceans and are usually located where the land and ocean meet. Lnland Pacific Ocean is the largest body of water on Earth.
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The term most often refers to oceans, seas, and lakes, but it includes smaller pools of water such as ponds, wetlands, or more rarely, puddles.
Some bodies of wyat collect and move water, such as rivers and streams, and others primarily hold water, such as lakes and oceans. InSoviet geologists took on the challenge, setting their drills over the Kola Peninsula, which juts eastward out of the Scandinavian landmass. The Kola Superdeep Borehole was just 9 inches in diameter, but at 40, feet 12, meters reigns as the deepest hole.
In North America, two other lakes are deeper than Tahoe; one is Crater Lake in Inlahd at 1, feet or inlqnd in depth. Although Tahoe is not the largest, deepest or oldest, watet is one of the clearest and most beautiful lakes in the world, and is regarded as the Jewel of the Sierra. Canada, with a size of 9, sq km, has almost equal size of China 9, sq kmbut its proximity to the North Pole makes it look much larger than China. India has a size of 3, sq km, which looks tiny compared to Greenland.
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What are the 7 major bodies of water?
Lake, Lake Lakes are inland bodies of standing water. Although millions of lakes are scattered over Earth's surface, most are located in higher latitudes a Lake Constance, Lake Constance, Ger. Bodensee, lake, sq mi ( sq km), bordering on Switzerland, Germany, and Austria. It is 42 mi (68 km) long and has a maximu. The Caspian Sea is the largest inland body of water in the world and accounts for 40 to 44% of the total lacustrine waters of the world. The coastlines of the Caspian are shared by Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan. How many inland seas are there in the world? An inland lake refers to a naturally occurring body of standing water with a varied biodiversity. The largest inland lake in the world is Lake Ladoga in Russia, which has an area of 17, sq. km.
The Caspian Sea is the Earth's largest inland body of water. It lies at the junction of Europe and Asia, with the Caucasus Mountains to the west and the steppes of Central Asia to the east. It is bordered by Russia to the northwest, Azerbaijan to the west, Iran to the south, Turkmenistan to the southeast and Kazakhstan to the northeast. Ownership of the sea's resources is a contentious issue among its surrounding countries. The Caspian Sea is rich with oil and natural gas, making access to it a high-stakes proposition.
These complicated socio-cultural and political aspects, as well as the geographic and environmental features, make the Caspian Sea an interesting subject for researchers. Nevertheless, during harsh winters its entire northern half can freeze. There are three distinct regions of the Caspian Sea. This area has the shallowest water in the Caspian, about 20 feet 4 to 5 m. The Middle Caspian plunges in depth to about feet m. The western seabed slopes swiftly while the eastern gradates gently, according to New World Encyclopedia.
The shores are hilly. The Southern Caspian reaches depths of more than 3, feet 1, m and holds most of the water. Kukral described the southern shores as lined with "cliffs and outcroppings overlooking the water where Persian elites often built homes. The Caspian Sea is endorheic, meaning it has no natural outlets.
More than rivers flow into the Caspian Sea, according to Natural History Magazine , none of which are in the east. The primary tributary is the Volga River in the north, which provides about 80 percent of the inflowing water. The Ural River, also in the north, and the Kura River in the west, are also significant tributaries.
The inflowing fresh water from these rivers dilute the water. Salinity changes from north to south, from 1. By contrast, the North Atlantic Ocean has a salinity of 37 ppt, according to Encyclopedia Britannica. Because it has no outflow, the amount of rainfall in the regions of the rivers can greatly impact the water level of the Caspian Sea, according to GRID-Arendal , an environmental information center.
Human-constructed dams built during the last two centuries have also changed water levels. Scientists theorize that tectonic movement and sedimentation changes could be other factors. In recent years, climate change has played a major role.
More extreme weather patterns have increased rainfall in Russia, which brings more water into the Volga River and Caspian Sea.
But scientists have also seen evidence that overall warmer temperatures could cause the Caspian Sea to dry up. Scientists estimate that human-caused factors, including oil spills, which limit evaporation by covering the water with a thin film, account for 3 to 5 percent of water level variation, according to Natural History Magazine.
There are approximately 50 small, mostly uninhabited islands in the Caspian Sea, according to New World Encyclopedia. Most are in the north, but the largest island, Ogurja Ada, is in the south. The Caspian Sea is next to the world's largest lagoon, according to Lakepedia. The 6,square-mile 18, square km Kara-Bogaz Gol lagoon is on the eastern coast of the Caspian Sea and is separated from it by sand bars.
A dam was built between the Caspian Sea and Kara-Bogaz Gol in but it was removed in because of the changes it caused to water levels. Despite its name, the Caspian Sea can be called either a lake or a sea. Kukral refers to it as a lake, as do many scholars.
It has historically been considered a sea because of its size and its saline water, but it embodies many characteristics of lakes. Much of the confusion comes because there are no internationally agreed-upon definitions for seas or lakes.
Seas are often defined by connection to the ocean or another sea via salt water, which the Caspian Sea is not. Seas are usually partially enclosed by land, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration , but the Caspian Sea is entirely enclosed by land. Seas are typically salt water. While the Caspian Sea is not fresh water, its salty water is diluted by the inflow of fresh water, especially in the north.
The question of whether it is a lake or a sea has political and economic ramifications, wrote Hanna Zimnitskaya in a Journal of Eurasian Studies article.
If the Caspian Sea is a lake, then the United Nations and international law have no control over its waters, she wrote.
If it is a sea, international organizations can have input on its use. This is especially important because its energy resources. If the Caspian Sea is a lake, it contains 40 percent of all lake water in the world. The Caspian Sea is a remnant of the ancient Paratethys Sea, part of the Tethys Ocean that existed 50 million to 60 million years ago.
Over millennia, continental platforms shifted, and the Tethys Ocean lost its connections to other oceans. Much of it evaporated during hot and dry periods, and eventually the Caspian Sea, the Black Sea and the Aral Sea formed. The Caspian Sea is estimated to be about 30 million years old. The salt water from the Tethys Sea remained and accounts for the Caspian Sea's salinity.
According to the New World Encyclopedia, archaeologists estimate that humans inhabited the area around 75, years ago. It is named after the Caspi Tribe, which settled on its southwestern shore.
Europeans learned of the resource-rich area and began traveling to the Caspian Sea to investigate in the 16th century.
The first offshore oil well was drilled in Today, the oil and gas industry is prominent in the area. Other businesses include salt extraction, fishing and tourism along the coasts. From the midth to late 20th century, the water level varied by more than 12 feet 3. In , the Caspian Sea flooded and caused widespread destruction. Since then, several more floods have occurred.
Since , the water level has risen almost 7. The Caspian Sea is known for its biodiversity, Kukral said. It is considered an independent zoogeographical region because of its unique qualities, according to the World Wildlife Fund. In many areas, the shores are dotted with shallow saline pools in which birds, small fish, crustaceans and invertebrates thrive. Birds are present throughout the year, and many species use the Caspian Sea as a migratory refuge.
Nearly 2, species and subspecies of animals live in and around the Caspian Sea, according to Casp Info. About of them are endemic to the area, including the Caspian gull, Caspian turn, spur-thighed tortoise, Horsfield's tortoise, Caspian white fish, Caspian salmon and Caspian seal, the only aquatic mammal in the area.
Nearby petroglyphs suggest that dolphins and porpoises may have once lived in the Caspian Sea, according to the Smithsonian Institution. The most famous and financially valuable animal in the region is the beluga sturgeon, sometimes called the European or Caspian sturgeon. The world's largest freshwater fish, the beluga sturgeon is known for its eggs, which are processed into caviar. The majority of the world's beluga caviar comes from the Caspian Sea.
This has caused problems with overfishing. Dams have also destroyed much of their spawning grounds, and pesticides used in land agriculture have limited their fertility.
The beluga sturgeon is now critically endangered, according to the World Wildlife Fund. The vegetation in the Turkmenistan portion of the Caspian shores is considered impoverished. Nevertheless, there are some specialized salt-resistant plants like shrubs and sagebrush. The Caspian Sea faces many ecological threats that have ramifications on human residents of the area, flora and fauna, the economy and the overall ecosystem.
The intensive oil and gas development in the Caspian region has caused serious water, air and land pollution problems, natural resources depletion, harm to wildlife and plant life, ecosystem disturbance, desertification and loss of biological and landscape diversity, according to Casp Info. Oil spills, waste from onshore industrial and municipal sites and chemicals, untreated sewage and trash carried in from rivers are major causes of land and water pollution.
About 1 million cubic meters million gallons of untreated industrial wastewater is dumped into the Caspian each year, according to the Pars Times. The rising sea levels have caused flooding, and as the water washes over shoreline oil wells, it carries oil and other pollutants inland. Scientists estimate that the on- and off-shore drilling operations in the Caspian area emit 15 to 20 million tons of CO2-equivalent each year, according to GRID-Arendal.
This has led to serious air pollution problems in the area. The environmental damage has led to serious health problems for residents of the five countries around the Caspian Sea, who ingest pollutants through air, drinking water, food and swimming. According to the Pars Times, Caspian-area Kazakhstan sees four times the rate of blood diseases, tuberculosis and intestinal infections than other parts of the country.
Rates of cancer around the Caspian Sea are also higher than average in all five countries. During the Soviet era, the cities of Sumgayit and Baku were heavily industrialized. Today, the sea around these cities is an ecological dead zone. Human stillbirths and miscarriages happen at higher levels than in inland areas. Addressing any of these problems is extremely difficult because of ownership disputes between the five countries. Five countries share the Caspian Sea but who benefits from the oil?
Where are the boundaries or jurisdiction within the lake? These persistent questions are hard to answer and often undermine efforts at cooperation. Live Science. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer.