A sign near the Dead Sea reads, 'Danger! Open Pits'. More than 3,000 sinkholes have formed on the banks of the receding Dead Sea, as people divert water from the Jordan River. Photo: Molly Hunter

By Molly Hunter
17 March 2015

EIN GEDI, ISRAEL (ABC News) – There are more than 3,000 sinkholes on the banks of the Dead Sea – and they're multiplying exponentially, according to environmentalists, as the body of water dries up.

"It's nature's revenge," said Gidon Bromberg, the Israeli Director at EcoPeace Middle East, an organization that brings together Jordanian, Palestinian and Israeli environmentalists to protect their shared environmental heritage.

"These sinkholes are a direct result of the inappropriate mismanagement of water resources in the region."

More than 1,400 feet below sea level, the Dead Sea is the lowest point on land. The first sinkhole was spotted in the 1980s. By 1990, there were 40, and 15 years later new chasms are breaking open every day.

"They could develop overnight. Or over time," Bromberg said. "Making them unpredictable. And very dangerous." […]

Bromberg said the only way to halt the opening of these chasms is to "stabilize" the Dead Sea.

The Dead Sea relies on the fresh water of the Jordan River – but only about 5 percent of the historic flow is currently flowing into the Dead Sea. [more]

Massive Sinkholes Break Open As Dead Sea Shrivels

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