the

Biblical wonder the Dead Sea is at risk of disappearing

the stricken shoreline around the dead

sea

reveals cracked and parched earth where

the water once lapped between jordan

the west bank and israel but scientists

say this body of water

the lowest point on earth is now

diminishing with such

speed losing nearly a meter and a half

every year in depth it could almost

disappear

by 2050 the dead sea has been shrinking

at an alarming rate for decades and to

give you an idea

of how fast it's been happening this is

a tide mark on the ground

and you can see in the space of 12

months how far the water receded

up to here and then in the space

of another year all the way over here

now of course this was a long time ago

because

that's where the dead sea is now nearly

one mile away

an expanding population in a region of

water shortages

and poor management are to blame

factories in the south evaporating water

to extract minerals

add to this man-made story of

destruction

and the signs of nature's anger

are everywhere sinkholes span the

shoreline

making much of the area inaccessible

this resort

now closed off because of the danger

we are standing inside basically ground

zero we are

standing where the earth swallows

ecologists monitoring the environment

here say what's happening

is catastrophic if you keep on taking

water from

fresh water from nature from the sea of

galilee or from the euphrates for

example

we will eventually ruin the local

environment

we are standing where we can learn the

first lesson of

we can't exploit all the water the way

we want to

we need to take care of nature as well

or else

we will all sink with it this area

is a major tourist attraction

visitors bob in the salty anxious waters

which are said to have healing

properties

but behind this image of tranquility

their lurks the middle east's deep

conflicts

if this natural wonder is to be restored

environmentalists say they'll need to be

more trust and far

greater regional cooperation to meet the

thirsty requirements

of everyone manufacture

more water in the mediterranean produce

renewable energy

in the desert areas and create healthy

interdependencies amongst us israelis

palestinians

jordanians first or we're going to see

potentially more conflict arising

out of these increasingly scarce

water resources the dead sea

is in many ways a gauge of the health of

the environment

efforts to revive it may help unify the

region

but equally if they fail it will be a

sign that water security

will become an even more toxic issue in

the future

alex rossi sky news