fbpx

Senegal’s Pink Lake

by Beckypublished on 31st January 2022
The Pink Lake in Senegal attracts tourists and is a vital local resource, but there are certain environmental issues that could threaten its existence. Lake Retba, or Lac Rose, near the capital, Dakar, is the only pink lake in Africa. It is a top tourist attraction and the salt dug from its bed also underpins the local economy on which thousands of people in Senegal and West Africa depend. But it is also right next to the Atlantic Ocean and a strip of constantly moving dunes – so blowing sand can cause siltation and disturb the lake’s ecosystem. Seashell mining also used to disrupt the flow of underground water to the lake and local rainfall has fallen due to climate change. Some local experts are worried that the lake’s salt may be being overexploited. Although action has been taken to protect it – the government has banned seashell mining and the lake is now given an annual biological rest – there is still a risk that if the environmental situation were to deteriorate, the effects could be quite serious. Continued, unregulated urbanisation of the area, for example, could expose the lake to the nearby sand dunes and prevent rainfall from reaching its waters. Such ecological changes would affect many people’s lives. Some scientists also believe the lake’s value is not only in its salt – its unusual ecology, they say, might provide valuable insights into the science of climate change. The Pink Lake has been on UNESCO’s tentative heritage list since 2005, but this has still not materialised. However, if environmental protection is not maintained, significant harm could be done to the lake.

Up Next

ChibezeEzekiel
Africa needs new energy sources to fuel its development, but the continent should invest in renewable energy instead of cheap, polluting alternatives like coal, says climate inclusion activist Chibeze Ezekiel. He tells the story of how he worked with local communities in Ghana to halt the construction of the country's first coal power plant -- and encouraged the government to prioritize investments in renewable energy instead.
wrestlers-dream
On beaches, in training grounds, and in gyms around Dakar, Kalanda sweats and strains as he trains hard for Senegal’s big-time wrestling competitions - determined to make it to the main wrestling arena. Filmmaker Oumar Ba’s intimate film, Kalanda: A Wrestler’s Dream, bears witness to his determination despite the odds, and sees him balance friendship and loyalty with hard-muscled competition.
NaimaPenniman
In this stunning spoken-word performance for TED, poet and "freedom-forging futurist" Naima Penniman celebrates the wonders of the natural world and humanity's connection to it. "I wonder if the sun debates dawn some mornings," she says.
On-the-white-nile
On the White Nile, by filmmaker Akuol de Mabior, takes us into the world of Rebecca Lith Chol. From the stern of her long wooden boat, Rebecca steers her crew down the White Nile, running her small fishing business.
scrapyard-anoumabo
Konaté Massioudou is a scrapyard trader in Ivory Coast, whose deafness neither defines nor deters him. Konaté Massioudou repairs, rebuilds and sells some of the thousands of household items from Europe that get discarded and dumped every day in Anoumabo, a massive electronic waste scrapyard in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
the-cave-puppeteer
The Cave, by filmmaker El Kheyer Zidani, tells a story of creativity, community, puppets and a son’s love for his father.