Worldview Image of the Week

Toshka Lakes, Egypt

Image captured on Dec 28, 2023, by the VIIRS instrument aboard the joint NASA/NOAA Suomi NPP satellite.

This false-color corrected reflectance animation shows the growth of the Toshka Lakes in Egypt annually from December 28, 2018, to December 28, 2023. These images were acquired by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) aboard the joint NASA/NOAA Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP) satellite. Press the Play button in the embedded map above to view the animation.

The Toshka Lakes appear due to periodic overflow of Lake Nasser (dark water body to the east/right of the Toshka Lakes). The Toshka Lakes initially formed from massive flash floods and river floods in Ethiopia in 1998 that caused floodwaters to flow down the Nile River. The Aswan High Dam initially prevented the massive flow of water by collecting it in Lake Nasser, but the flood control plan called for diverting excess water to the Toshka Lakes region once Lake Nasser reached capacity. Agricultural activity in the Toshka Lakes region rose rapidly in the 2000s, but soon the water levels of the lakes declined and became empty again by 2018.

This animation shows the regrowth of the lakes from 2018 to 2023 due to heavy rainfall in Sudan and South Sudan in the summer of 2019 and major flooding events in Sudan in 2020, 2021, and 2022. Also evident in the imagery is the greening from agriculture in the New Valley Project area between the Toshka Lakes and Lake Nasser. Click on the icon in the upper right corner of the embedded map to view the animation of the growth of the Toshka Lakes in Worldview.

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