Shockingly but true, Victoria, the largest tropical lake and the second largest fresh water lake in the world, is losing its sheen with the receding waters. The water level has depleted at least six feet in the past three years.
The lakes outflow through two hydroelectric dams at Jinja is termed as a minor problem by the government of Uganda but environmentalists personify it as half of the problem.
There are other such numerous examples in Africa that has faced the similar repercussions, for instance, Lake Chad, which is located to the northwestern side of Lake Victoria. It once ranked sixth in the world but has lost 2% level since 1960.
Lake Turkana in northern Kenya reduced half to its original flow and the great lake of Tanganyika also noticed five feet drop in five years.
Reasons for receding shoreline
1. years of famine
2. rising temperatures
4. turning off the passage of river Nile
5. overusing the source waters for irrigation as was the case in Lake Chad
6. deforestation around Lake Victoria, which makes the area less efficient for rain
7. over fishing
10. according to the environmentalists, 55% of drop in the level of lake is because of excessive flow but the Ugandan officials strongly opposed it.
Falling of the water levels is the severest blow to the dying biology of the Lake Victoria. Pollution has caused havoc to the aquatic flora and fauna by killing scores of unique species of tropical fish. Tilapia once the primary food fish, are declining because their inshore breeding grounds are vanishing.
Lake Victoria was actually a source of livelihood for nearly 30 million people.
The power supplies have experienced the worse impact. Factories in Tanzania have been shut down because the power, which is generated by the rivers, has been negligible due to its aridity.
Kampala, a city of more than 1 million, has undergone hours-long blackouts daily.
Though they have decided to curtail the dam outflow, yet it would not solve the problem of water loss as is said by the water minister, Mutagamba.
Thus, this indicates that global warming has really reached its zenith since it has started affecting our large water bodies as well. It’s high time now that we actually look into the matters of preserving our environment, which is engulfing our planet slowly and stealthily.