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Bolivia’s lakes are drying up and threatening entire populations

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Bolivia’s water is disappearing and what’s left of it, is getting dirtier. Nowhere is the water crisis being felt more than at Bolivia’s two largest lakes, world-renowned Lake Titicaca and Poopo.

Detected Closed Captioning: We’ve Come To See Lake Bobo Bolivia Second Largest In Wetter Days It Covered Nearly 400 Square Miles But The Lake Is All But Gone It’s Just A Cemetery Of Boats It’s Like The Sahara Desert Coughed Up A Bunch Of Fishing Skiffs Or Something The Water Must Have Gone Down so Fast People Just Have No Way To Get Their Boats Out Of Here And They Just left Them And Moved On Look At This Little Fishing Boat Whoever Owned This Thing Must Have Decided Number One there’s No Fishing Left Number Two I never Get My Boat Out Of Here Where Am I Gonna Put It An Entire lifestyle Just Evaporate It Was Lake Lake Bobo Was A Shallow Lake Only About ten Feet Deep It’s Sighs Always Fluctuated With The Seasons It’s Even Dried Up Before But This Time No One Around Here Thinks It’s Coming Back [Music] Village Leaders In What Was Once The Shoreline Community Of Chotto Are Anxious One Of The Worst Droughts In Bolivia’s Modern History Has Left This Region Arched Last Fall Bolivia’s Capital La Paz Was Literally Running Out of Water It Since Rained A Bit But Not Here 300 Miles Away It Is Dishonest Of Me King City She Says Under Total Mean This Second Vivino More Than 30 Pieces Is A mouthful It This Dosage As A Cutter [Music] Right Now We’re On Our Way To A Bridge To The Only River Of Eight That Is Still Feeding Little Boat From Lake Titicaca The Other Seven Of Completely Dried Up This Is The Desig Wad Arrow River What Swampland Remains Of Lake Bobo Is Due To This Influx Of Water choro Town Leader Mario Ibarra Says The River Is The Region’s Last Lifeline To Nara my Little VA I Will Do Better Skin Not Giving Us Aqua Anything With Every passing Month The Desig With Arrow Brings Less And Less Water And It’s More and More Polluted Anomalies Better Personas No No Less Yes How Come You Still A Definite On Says Day They Are most A CIO Theta In Yester Apical displace Marzo Abril Mayo Reporter Yeah no It Is The Del Rio Torment Ascends Era Veto This The Water Here Used To Be Crystalline But Then Something Began To Change Hours Away And Slightly Higher On The Bolivian Plans It’s Called El Alto Once A Small Suburb Above The Capital La Paz It’s Now Home To Nearly Two Million People Sewers Here Are In Short Supply Waste Management Virtually Non-existent most Human Waste From This Megalopolis runs Into The Ground Garbage Goes Into Open Landfills When It Rains All Of It Washes Down Hill And Into Tributaries That Feed Another Well-known Bolivian Lake Titicaca On The Border With Peru Two Hours Northeast From El Alto Titicaca Is The World’s Highest Navigable Body Of Water Some 900 Legendary Square Miles Of Blue Well Blue And Increasingly Slime Green We Got To The Lake About 30 Seconds Ago And We’ve Already Found Our First Dead Fish One local Mayor Alfredo Ferraro Is Deeply Worried For The Lakes Future Yes ánotá por Que En Las Orillas De La Go El Calor Es Diferente Yeah Damar Los Países Yest On A Policy no Muertos Los Kabocha Saddest Operation 10 Algunas Veces El Lago Media Oscar Oh Llamo Es Crystalline Oh You Know Cinco Años At Rasmus Immense Empezar Dough Yeah Este Tema Porque El Principe La Gente Mismo Estaba Experience Odd Ok Con Pesce Que Tenia Nos Personas Que Van Gogh Montaner A Pero No Es OC Ferraro and Several Area Mayor’s Huddle At An emergency Meeting To Discuss The Problem and Hopefully Find Solutions Octavio Kiss Back Calls What’s Happening Liquid Injustice No Se Con Agua Limpia de Las Cordilleras Utilizes La Ciudad Y La Ciudad Knows De Ville De Agua Contaminated Prácticamente Que Effect Our Los Origin Aereo’s Las Comunidades Cousin Originally Owes De Las Region Que Pasar A Civilian Turista Este Lago Tan mitad Oh Yabas No Serio Few Static Amenti Des Astros Hola Imagine Mismo No Ojala Que Esta Contamination No ABBA’s tenemos Islas En El Lado Que Son Que Tienen Attractive OHS Touristy We Head For One Of Those Islands With Researcher Gonzalo Laura But First A Detour Into A To Tora You Can’t Do This With An Amateur Sailor because You Can Get Stuck In The tutorial Totora Is A Sedge That Drives In Titicaca Shallower Waters It’s A Sanctuary For Ducks And Frogs And Fish in Some Communities They’ve Even Made Floating Islands Out Of It It’s Also A Natural Barrier Against A Lot Of Human Pollutants Soaking Them Up For Their Nutrient Value Yesterday Contamination on Yeager SS La última Línea De Defensa Por ESO See New Algis Enjoy – tores La Contamination Say Esparza Dia Equal Observable But The Waste Flow Into Titicaca Is Overwhelming The Totora This Is Causing The Algae To Bloom Out Of Control Setting Off A Dangerous Chain Of Events Contaminants Come In They Cloud Up The Water That Blocks The Sun And that Allows The Algae Underneath To Bloom Yes Sir And They Take Oxygen Out Of The Water And That Affects The natural Plants In The Fish Yes Down there They Begin To Bloom Anaerobic Bacteria So They In Their Process Liberate Hydrogen Sulfur That It’s hydrogen Sulfide That Smells And That kills The Frog Fish All That Kind Of Of Biodiversity And Affect Old To Change and It Stinks Not Really No It Gets Worse Than That Yeah Much Worse The Strong Smell Wafts Up Over The Nearby Island Of Sri Ki Home To Some 500 People Caravaggio Keith Bay Is A Resident And Local Historian He Takes Me Up The Mountain To Show Me What They’re Up Against A VA Muchos Meses Cuando Yo Era New Yo Na DSS Day Dis Solamente Nosotros En El Trabajo Salaburu Yeah See I Algas Ki entonces Los Acamas Interlace Algas cogent A Los Países Hace Santos Habia tan Los Creo Vamos Lá Stretches Illegal Agua Tuvia Cuando Una Mañana Roma’s Vivos Todas Las Calles Ostriches New Ideas He Says He’s Worried That Bad Water Down There Could Leach Into The Islands Natural Spring The Town’s Only source Of Water This Tiny Trickle Cuando La Si Que Estaba Muy Fuerte Cuanto Tiempo Esperaba La Gente Aquí Para Tener Para Ganar Sous Vide Ana’s Own Bed Own De Todo De Vente Lit Rows Soon NCCM pre-trained Algunos De DAC In Quasi Digamos De Vente Let Rosa Por Lo Menos Diez A Quincy Manatos Entonces La Espera En La Cola Cuando La Espera Según La Llegada Por ESO Muchas Veces sigue Hora Venimos A Las Tres De La Mañana To Stop The Steady Onslaught Of wastewater Bolivia And Peru Have Formed A Partnership To Build Waste Treatment Plants Bolivia Has Earmarked 85 Million dollars For Two Plants Already But Experts Say At Least 20 Treatment centers Are Needed Because The Damage Being Done Reaches Beyond The Lake Itself Other UNESCO Tourist Sites Such As The 800 Year Old Ruins At Tiahuanaco will Also Suffer Says This Local Guide Named Marcelo Dos A Caesarian Impacto Muy Negativa Para Don Para La Misma Gente De La Veo Por Que En Visit Auntie valle De La Luna Momento Severe Harm Our eva Preferir No Visit Our Silver Arrow el Que Vas Uri Todo Estes Consecuencias Son Las Personas Que Viven Visto Delta D smokey Bday Desu Desu A Naturally Zakat ene Marcelo Like Most Bolivians Believes It’s Not Too Late For Titicaca But Pollution Is One Thing The Pattern Of Ever Drier Weather Is Another Titicaca is Tributaries Are Evaporating Because Of It The Lake Is 2 Meters Shallower Than Normal That’s A Drop In This Highland Bucket But Enough To Stop Runoff From Flowing Further Downhill Via The Desig With Arrow River Remember Which Lake That Feeds Lake Popo In The Tiny Community Of Pasta Few People Hold Out Like This Woman Mercedes Who’s Trying To Grow Canola On The Lake Bed Itself Whose Dedsec Where Da De Aqui antes Say Pulled Over And Lago Here Aqui Esta El Agua Champion Yeah antes Y La Tierra Que Es Muy Buena Para Cenar um Pope Charlie Crews Here At Papa A Vicious Circle Closes Urban Sprawl pollutes One Lake Drought And Global Warming Choke Off This One Entirely In A Way Mercedes Little Farm Is A Symbol Of How Resigned People Now Are After All If You really Have Hope That Your Lakes Coming Back You Don’t Start Farming On A Spot that Should Be Under Water [Music]

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Geographic Location References for this Article Could Not Be Accurately Determined. Here is our best guess.
Name: Lago Titicaca
Latitude: -15.8
Longitude: -69.4