Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies
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There is widespread interest in restoring drying saline lakes. At Iran’s hypersaline Lake Urmia, managers have sought a uniform target lake level of 1274.1 m above sea level to lower salinity below 263 g L−1 and recover Artemia to sufficient densities to support flamingos. We suggest that addressing a broader range of objectives will allow more flexibility for managing the lake. We define eight restoration objectives to lower salinity, sustain Artemia and flamingo populations, separate islands from each other and the mainland, reduce lakebed dust, maintain commercially valuable ions, and improve recreational access from resort beaches. We use 40 years of experimental, field, satellite, and model data to relate each objective to lake level. We describe variations through time and associated uncertainties for meeting each objective.
Sima, Somayeh; Rosenberg, David E.; Wurtsbaugh, Wayne A.; Null, Sarah E.; and Kettenring, Karin M., "Managing Lake Urmia, Iran for Diverse Restoration Objectives: Moving Beyond a Uniform Target Lake Level" (2021). Civil and Environmental Engineering Faculty Publications. Paper 3757.