Climate change leaves reservoir in Syria dry for the first time - in pictures

Farmers left in desperate straits as falling water level threatens crops and livestock

Goats on the banks of the almost dry Duwaysat dam outside the town of Al Diriyah in Syria's northern Idlib province. Low rainfall, structural damage and extraction by struggling farmers have emptied a key reservoir in north-west Syria, leaving it completely dry for the first time.

A herdsman leads his flock around the Duwaysat dam in Idlib province.

The arid landscape of the Duwaysat dam – the result of poor rainfall, structural damage and extraction by farmers that have emptied a key reservoir in north-west Syria.

The effects of drought in near Al-Diriyah in Idlib province, Syria.

Waterfront properties left high and dry by the falling water levels in the Duwaysat dam.

An aerial view of the retreating water level in the Duwaysat dam caused by the emptying of a key reservoir in north-western Syria, leaving it completely dry for the first time.

Plants cling to life in what water is left in the dam.

The effect of the drought is dramatic. "Because of drought and low rainfall, we can now walk on the floor of the reservoir," says reservoir managing engineer Maher Al Hussein.

Maher Al Hussein says about 800 families rely on the reservoir to irrigate crops and water their livestock.

Cattle farmer Abu Joumaa says 'for 10 years we have come to this reservoir. If God does not send us good rainfall that could fill the reservoir this year ... people won't be able to grow crops they rely on to make a living'.

Updated: December 3rd 2021, 7:16 AM
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