14 May 2019
Regional river shallowing is a disaster, says expert

A number of the Volga basin rivers have suffered from the lowering of the waterline in the Kuybyshev Water Reservoir.

Professor of the Department of Environmental Engineering and Water Management Nafisa Mingazova comments, “Kuybyshev Water Reservoir is a man-managed water body. The waterline was lowered because a significant spring flood had been expected, but water quickly permeated the soil because of a warm spring. The rivers shallowed. The water will, of course, come back, but that’s not a solution to the environmental problem. The shallowing has caused massive fish deaths in the affected rivers, as well as mollusks, worms, and crustaceans. Some fish species will not be able to spawn, and the water quality will suffer as well.”

The situation may normalize in a few years if the summer of 2019 will be humid enough and there will be no comparable disasters in the following years.

“There is a federal program to improve the condition of the Volga river, but it does not include all the necessary measures,” adds Mingazova. “Biotechnical steps must be included.”

Source text: Larisa Busil

Photo: Rufina Gimaletdinova

Translation: Yury Nurmeev

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