Climate change and conflict have left the river Jordan a stagnant stream and the Sea of Galilee critically low
If Jesus were alive today, he might reconsider a baptism in the river Jordan; there’s a good chance he’d pick up an eye infection. Faecal bacteria in the pungent, murky waters have risen in recent years to up to six times the recommended levels.
Once a raging torrent, the lower Jordan has been starved of water to become a stagnant stream, filled with sewage and dirty run-off from farms. Around 95% of its historical flow has been diverted by agriculture during the past half-century. And the river’s primary source, the Sea of Galilee – where Christians believe the son of God walked on water – has for years been dammed to prevent its demise.