Recent heavy rains have been a blessing for Iran’s Lake Urmia, which has been rapidly drying in recent years.

Lake Urmia

Lake Urmia

Reports from Azerbaijan provincial officials indicate that the water levels have risen to their highest levels in recent years.

The report indicates that the water levels are 31 cm higher than at the same time last year.

Khalil Sai, the head of emergency response for Azerbaijan province, reports an increase of close to 2 billion cubic metres in the volume of the lake’s waters in the past seven months.

Sai warned, however, that replenishment efforts should continue because the situation could easily be reversed as summer heat approaches.

Lake Urmia has been drying out very rapidly in recent years, and the government has taken emergency steps to save the lake, which include opening dams built on the waters that feed the lake and channeling river water to the lake.

The recent rains have relieved some of the challenges posed by water shortages across Iran.