Seven foreign journalists dive into Lake Van
VAN - Demirören News Agency
Journalists, who came to Van’s Gevaş district from Germany, France, Azerbaijan and Kyrgyzstan, were accompanied by a diving instructor and divers from the fire brigade.
“Van has a wonderful nature. The underwater images of the microbialites were highly impressive,” said Erlan Aknazarov, a journalist from Kyrgyzstan.
“The last time I came here was after the earthquake, but Van seems to have changed a lot since then,” Azerbaijani journalist Nemat Akbarli said, adding that he enjoyed the event.
The festival is organized by the municipality in order to introduce Lake Van to the world and to increase the interest of local and foreign tourists in the city.
Microbialites are mounds of rock or benthic sedimentary deposits made of carbonate mud that are formed with the help of microbes.
For billions of years, microbialites played a crucial role in helping produce the oxygen-rich atmosphere that now supports life on earth.
The lake harbors the largest known microbialites on Earth. In the basin of the lake overlooking the eastern province of Bitlis’ Adilcevaz district, huge tower-like alkaline microbiallites of 40 meters in height have been discovered.
Lake Van, the country’s largest, covers an area of more than 3,700 square kilometers, which is one-third of the Marmara Sea.
The lake earned Blue Flag status on July 4, 2018, after meeting the criteria of the eco-label awarded by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), including water quality, environmental education and information, environmental management and safety.