Wow

Look: 7 Great Salt Lake images reveal how shockingly fast its shrinking

NASA Worldview

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Take Utah’s Great Salt Lake, for example.

Explosive population growth coupled with worsening droughts have led to record-low water levels in recent years.

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The lake is shrinking so fast that its transformation can be seen from space.

NASA Worldview

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Here are 7 views of the shrinking Great Salt Lake over time:

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7. This was the Great Salt Lake in September 1987 during an especially rainy year.

Image by Landsat 5 (USGS/NASA)

6. And here’s the lake in June 2022, during a year of historically low water levels.

Image by Landsat 8 and 9 (USGS/NASA)

USGS/contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2022), processed by ESA

4. As the lake dries up, winds kick up toxic dust from the lakebed. Darker orange/red spots denote higher aerosol levels around the lake.

3. Population growth has a major impact on water levels. White dots show where people lived in 1985, and red dots in 2019.

ESA (Contains data from the DLR World Settlement Footprint)

NASA Worldview

1. A closer view of the northern Great Salt Lake and Clyman Bay shows how much lakebed became exposed from 2017 to 2021.

Image by Landsat 8 (USGS/NASA)