Blackening spreads on white sand dunes of Lake Salda: Expert
The blackening of the white sand dunes on the shores of Lake Salda in the southwestern province of Burdur has noticeably increased as the mineral that causes the formation of white sand is disappearing by the day due to pollution, an expert has stated.
The spread of blackening on the white sand of Lake Salda, which draws attention with its turquoise color, is accelerating, stated Erol Kesici, the scientific advisor of the Turkish Association for the Conservation of Nature (TTKD).
Emphasizing that the magnesite mineral that makes the sand turn white was formed millions of years ago, Kesici noted that this feature is primarily due to the natural reactions occurring only on the surface of Lake Salda and Lake Van in the country.
Reminding that he warned about this issue again in September and shared photos showing that the blackening was serious, Kesici said that in the photos taken again recently, it was seen that the blackening on the surface of the lake continued and gradually increased.
“We had stated that if Lake Salda is not protected together with its surroundings, this blackening will rapidly increase, and so it has,” Kesici explained.
“This blackening is invasive. It can spread every area on the lake,” the expert warned.
Kesici pointed out that the soil of Lake Salda shows similarities with the soil of Mars, which is reported to be the most suitable planet for ecological evolution and life, adding that the lake is one of the sensitive and rare areas with a fragile texture.
“Extremely serious pollution caused by vehicle-human traffic around the lake, withdrawal of groundwater for agriculture and coastal occupation regulations around the lake still continue for various purposes,” the expert said.
He called for the immediate cessation of human activities in Lake Salda.
Endemic creatures are also in danger as the lake cannot discharge its water due to its nature and is quite fragile in terms of water quality, Kesici said.
On the other hand, District Governor Erdem Yenisoy said that a standard image was taken and served to the press regarding the allegations of blackening on the white sand dunes.
Responding to the claims, Yenisoy explained that a wet appearance caused by precipitation and moisture in the existing soil in May and December is perceived as the progress of the blackening.
“It is given to the press twice a year, and now this news has become ordinary. Burdur Governor’s Office and the district governor’s office are taking all precautions.”
“There has not been any pollution or human activity in the last four years anyway,” Yenisoy added.
Reminding that people entered the lake with their vehicles to wash them before Lake Salda was taken under protection, Yenisoy said, “Currently, people are forbidden to even set foot on the sand.”
He also added that the work on the establishment of a scientific research laboratory in the region, in which NASA will also take part, is ongoing.
“Due to its similarity to Mars, the feasibility studies will be carried out here,” he explained.