The Kara-Bogaz-Gol (KBG) is a large, shallow lagoon of the Caspian Sea. It normally covers about 18,000 square kilometers and is just a few meters deep. The Caspian Sea is the largest inland body of water in the world, often categorized as a large salt lake. It is salty because rivers (especially the Volga) flow into it, but none flow out. Water leaves only through evaporation, and the dissolved salts remain.
The Caspian is below sea level, and the KBG is 2–3 meters lower, so water flows from the Caspian through a narrow strait into the KBG, where it evaporates. The KBG is far saltier than the Caspian, and is one of the saltiest bodies of water in the world. Its salinity is 300–350 parts per thousand, while the Caspian’s is about 13 parts per thousand. (The ocean’s salinity averages about 35 parts per thousand.) Since the KBG’s water flows in from the Caspian, the Caspian’s fluctuations affect the KBG.
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