Astronaut Jessica Meir captured from ISS Lake Balkhash, Kazakhstan.
Lake Balkhash is the largest lakes in Central Asia, and belongs to an endorheic (closed) basin shared by Kazakhstan and China, with a small portion in Kyrgyzstan. The basin drains into the lake via seven rivers, the primary of which is the Ili River, bringing the majority of the riparian inflow. The Ili is fed by precipitation, largely vernal snowmelt, from the mountains of China’s Xinjiang region. Like the Aral Sea, it is shrinking as a result of the diversion of water from rivers that feed it. The lake is divided by a strait into two distinct parts. The western part is fresh water, while the eastern half is saline. The eastern part is on average 1.7 times deeper than the western section. Major economic activities in the area include mining, ore processing and fishing.
The local scenery on the ground of Lake Balkhash in spring is as follows.