From 1941 until recently, water diversions by the Los Angeles Department of Power and Water has cause Mono Lake to drop by 40 feet. The tufa towers you see in this panorama formed underwater and are now exposed by the dropping lake level. In addition, the water diversions caused the salinity of the lake to double, endangering the ecosystem balance and threatening the nesting and feeding of a variety of migratory birds. After numerous lawsuits, and an incredible grassroots movement, runoff from the Sierra Nevada Mountains are filling the tributaries and making their way back to Mono Lake.
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