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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 July 2006, 10:16 GMT 11:16 UK
A Witch's Brew
First broadcast July 2006

The Aral Sea

It is barely fifteen years since Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan emerged from the shadows of the Soviet Empire and all now find themselves facing enormous environmental problems.

As Firdevs Robinson discovers in two programmes for One Planet, these range from deforestation to the dangers posed by former uranium dumps and the long term effects of Soviet water policies.

Part Two: Regeneration

In the second programme of this two part series, Firdevs Robinson takes a bone-shaking ride to the Aral Sea in the deserts of Kazakhstan.

For decades, the Aral Sea has been shrinking, as water from nearby rivers was diverted into cotton production.

But now a new dam is bringing fresh life to the Aral and as the water levels are raised, so too are the hopes of the fishermen who live by its shores.

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