Salda Lake, one of the most unique lakes in the world, is in danger of losing its special structure. In Salda, which also faces the interest of NASA after the increasing tourist interest, the ecosystem of the lake may never recover if the destruction is not prevented.
With its unique structure, white sands, and turquoise waters, Salda Lake is faced with many environmental dangers. While there was a project created to turn the lake into a touristic spot on one side, another step that would endanger the lake came from NASA.
US scientists have begun to come and go to the area to study Salda Lake. The reason for this is that Salda Lake resembles the possible water structure of Mars billions of years ago. Environmental organizations and nature activists were concerned about the possibility of accommodation being built around the lake to host foreign researchers and tourists.
What dangers await the lake?
In the past years, the idea of building a public garden around the lake was approved and the project was completed. Although the officials involved in the project said that the project aims to protect the lake, experts argued that this puts the lake at great risk. Then, allegations that NASA would work on the lake came to the fore. NASA’s Twitter posts and statements about the lake excited the scientific world. However, according to geologists, these studies could ruin the uniqueness of the lake.
Why is Salda Lake special?
Salda Lake, located about 60 kilometers west of Burdur province, is the deepest lake in Turkey. But that’s not why it’s special all over the world. The deep blue waters of the lake, which has small islands on it, are home to 301 plant species belonging to 61 families. 20 of these species are specific to the region and are at risk. The lake, whose water is said to be “healing” due to its geological and chemical properties, has turned into a closed ecosystem with the living creatures in it, and therefore it is very sensitive. Hydromagnesite is also found in many types of minerals in the lake. This mineral, which is also found in the Jezero Crater on Mars, is thought to have come from the microbialites that formed the first microbes.
“If the damage stops now, it will take 200 years for the lake to heal”
“If the single-celled organisms in the lake die, Salda Lake will end, ” says geology expert Servet Kevin. Stating that life in the lake will not occur again, Cevni says that if the heavy tourist influx is stopped and other works are abandoned, the damage to the lake can be eliminated in 200 years. However, if it is not stopped now, Salda Lake will no longer be Salda Lake.