If you fancy bathing in the Dead Sea, you’d better hurry. An environmental group has issued its strongest warning yet that the sea is in danger of drying up. “The Dead Sea is dying,” says Gidon Bromberg, director of Friends of the Earth Middle East. “It’s falling by a metre every year.”
Just 20 years ago, tourists could step from their hotels straight into the saltiest water on earth. Now, some resorts, such as the Ein Gedi spa, are a mile from the shore and others have suffered subsidence due to the activities of the region’s chemical industry.
A decade ago, levels fell at 6.5cm per year. Now, that rate has rocketed to more than one metre annually. There is a deal between Palestine and Israel to construct the Two Seas Canal, a scheme to replenish the Dead Sea with water from the Red Sea. However, the 2.7 billion pound sterling project is years from completion.