Promotional materials for the upcoming 12th edition of the Times Comprehensive Atlas of the World include these maps of the Aral Sea. The first one is from the 1967 edition of this atlas.
The second map from the new edition (2007) shows how much the sea has shrunk since then due to water extraction and climate change. The Russian government diverted the main rivers that feed it (the Amu Darya and Syr Darya) for irrigation. Now Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan have inherited a salty, polluted mess. But there may be oil and gas underneath so all's not lost.
Oh and you're supposed to admire the nice Bartholomew cartography too!
3 months ago