Salinity in Tibetan lakes declining: Survey

Salinity in Tibetan lakes declining: Survey

Chinese researchers study implications of decreasing salinity for biodiversity, freshwater resources

By Alperen Aktas

ISTANBUL (AA) – Lakes on the Tibetan Plateau in China are becoming less salty, a sign that researchers on Wednesday said could impact the region's freshwater resources.

The daily South China Morning Post reported that the research carried out by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) looking at the effects of climate change had found that over the last 30 years, there had been a 17% increase in water volume in the Tibetan Plateau lakes. These lakes make up 50% of China’s total lake surface area.

Zhu Liping, the study's lead author, said: “Lake salinity directly affects aquatic ecosystems and the available freshwater resources. The declining trend in lake salinity on the Tibetan Plateau favors aquatic biodiversity. It will increase biodiversity and help it develop in a good direction.”

Zhu also mentioned that reduced salinity would lower the chances of an excessive build-up of minerals or nutrients in the water, potentially causing harmful algae blooms and harming aquatic life.

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