James Chapman – The Aral Sea Project 2023

In 1960, the Aral Sea was the fourth-largest lake in the world. Today, it has shrunk to one-tenth of its original size, devastating local wildlife and causing serious health problems among the human population.

Aral Sea 1989 and 2014

(Photo: The Aral Sea in 1960 and 2016)

Project Amu Darya (August-September 2023) will capture and portray the history of the Aral Sea Crisis through the lens of the Amu Darya, the Aral Sea’s main tributary. Travelling from source to sea, the project will conduct oral interviews with those most affected by the crisis, as well as the NGOs and charities which are working to mitigate the effects of this ecological tragedy.


The Amu Darya Film will be released in 2024. u Darya.


EXPEDITION DATES: 14 August 2023 to 1 October 2023

EXPEDITION LOCATION: Uzbekistan, Tajikistan

TEAM MEMBERS: James Chapman and Annie Liddell


Annie Liddell

Annie Liddell

James Chapman

James Chapman


You can find out more about this project by visiting www.projectamudarya.org.


SES members and all other participants in SES endorsed expeditions take part at their own risk, and will not hold SES, its trustees, employees, volunteers, partners or agents liable (whether in contract or in tort or in negligence or for breach of statutory duty or otherwise) for any loss, criminal or reputational damage, personal injury, delay or expense suffered or incurred on any such expedition. SES endorses the aims and objectives of these expeditions only.