Sea of Galilee Rises Above Danger Line

Wednesday, February 27, 2019 |  David Lazarus

After years of drought, the Sea of Galilee is on the rise thanks to the blessed rains that have fallen so far this winter. Due to today’s rains, over the past 24 hours, the water level has risen above the lower red line that determines when the fresh water lake becomes too salty and therefore undrinkable.

With the forecast of a storm ahead of us over the next days, it looks like a major source of Israel’s water will continue to recover. The level of the Sea of Galilee is now 1 inch above the red line. “Since the beginning of the rainy season, the level has risen by 1.8 yards (1.64 meters), but we still need 4.6 yards (4.20 meters) to fill the lake,” according to the Water Authority.

Despite the happy increase, the Water Authority reminds us that we are still at the lake’s lowest levels, still too close before it becomes dangerous. “After winter comes summer, and in the summer the level of the Sea of Galilee evaporates at a rate of about an inch every two days - so it is clear that the level will decline again, and none of us know what the next winter will look like,” they said.

A Water Authority spokesman adds that the pumping of water from the Sea of Galilee into the national system has been halted for the last three years. “If pumping continued, the level would be very deep today below the lower red line,” the spokesman said. Israel has developed water desalinization plants in order to provide fresh water for its growing population.

According to the forecast, the peak of winter storms in our region is still ahead. Tomorrow (Thursday) more storms are forecast, and snow is expected to fall on Mount Hermon. Sitting just above the Sea of Galilee, the snows of Hermon will flow down in springtime helping to replenish the lake.

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