NASA photos show Dead Sea dying

 NASA photos show Dead Sea dying

The ancient, aptly named lake is shrinking at an alarming rate.

Russell McLendon

Satellite images show the Dead Sea shrink from 1972 to 2011. (Photos: NASA)

The Dead Sea earned its name not from death exactly, but from a relative lack of life. That’s because, as a hypersaline lake, its water is far too salty for most wildlife to live there full-time (aside from recently discovered microbes on its seafloor).

But as the satellite images above illustrate, the Dead Sea itself has been gradually dying for decades. The trio of false-color images were taken at three points over the past 40 years — 1972, 1989 and 2011 — and reveal a dramatic transformation. Read more.