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The Importance Of The Nile

The Importance Of The Nile

18th January 2011
The Fertility Of The Nile

The Fertility Of
The Nile

The world's rivers are not only vital for the basic function of our planet, but they have also proved crucial to human civilisations everywhere. The longest, and inarguably one of the most famous, is the River Nile that flows through northern Africa, and is well known for it's incredibly fertile sediment that is excellent for farming.

The exact source of the Nile has been the subject of debate for years but many now agree that it's earliest source can be found in southern Rwanda. This part of the river, known as the White Nile, then flows through Tanzania, Lake Victoria, Uganda and Sudan where it joins with the smaller tributary flowing east, known as the Blue Nile, and the two continue flowing north together.

The Course Of The Nile

The Course Of
The Nile

Once it reaches Egypt, the river flows through the country until it reaches it's enormous delta into the Mediterranean Sea, where it ends its 6,695 km long journey. In Egypt particularly, the Nile has been of significant importance for thousands of years as most cities are built along it today, and nearly all of the ancient historical sites are found close to it's banks.

The Nile gets its name from the Greek word for valley Neilos and has had many uses to populations living along it from land irrigation and transport, to the farming of papyrus reeds. Today it supports 360 million people, and numerous species of animal that are indigenous to the region including the enormous Nile Crocodile, nearly 1,000 species of fish and 300 birds.

The Native Nile Crocodile

The Native Nile

However, due to the African heat and the lack of rain, the Nile loses most of it's water to evaporation, and worrying predictions suggest that between 2000 and 2025, the world's longest and one it's most important rivers, could lose up to 80% of it's water due to rising global temperatures. This would obviously have a devastating effect on all life that depends on it.

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