Lake Moeris - CC via Wikimedia
CAIRO – 23 August 2019: Egypt’s Ministry of Environment held a meeting to find solutions to pollution in national reserve of Lake Moeris (aka Lake Qauroun) in Fayoum Oasis, according to a statement from the Ministry on Friday.
Just a short 80 kilometers from Cairo and only 20 kilometers from Fayoum, the lake’s history has dubbed it as the most important lake in Egypt. The lake, which is believed to have been a lot bigger than it is today, was historically freshwater but persists today as a much smaller saltwater lake.
The meeting was held upon recommendation from the Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Moustafa Madbouly on August 18, to put an urgent plan to solve the environmental issues that are facing the lake such as pollutants resulting from sewage, and high salinity, and to get rid of Parasitic isopods, the statement said.
“The meeting aims to come up with an urgent solution to address the sewage drains that flow into the lake, identify urgent interventions to reduce pollution rates, and to clarify measures that will be implemented in the long term for […] the sustainability of the balance of the lake,” said Minister Yasmine Fouad during the meeting.
A large-scale monitoring for the industrial facilities that discharged wastes into the lake will be taken, the Minister said, adding that tighten penalties against violations by such facilities will be implemented. “A detailed technical study will be conducted to measure the salinity rates,” she said.
Since 1989, the lake has been protected to preserve the area’s biological and archeological activities formed as a result of the rare fossils that the lake has. Still, the lake is open for doing many activities like water sports, bird-watching, and fishing; fishing season is between July and September.
The lake is 115 kilometers squared, with two depths: five meters in the Eastern side of the lake and 13 meters in the Western side of the lake.
Additional reporting by Omnia Osama