From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- For the desert in Kazakhstan, see Aral Karakum.
The Karakum Desert, also spelled Kara-Kum and Gara Gum (“Black Sand”) (Turkmen: Garagum, Russian: Каракумы) is a desert in Central Asia. It occupies about 70 percent, or 350,000 km², of the area of Turkmenistan. The population is sparse, with an average of one person per 6.5 km² (one person per 2.5 sq miles).
The desert is crossed by the largest irrigation canal in the world, the Qaraqum Canal. The canal was started in 1954, is 1,375 km in length, and carries 13-20 km³ of water annually. Unfortunately, leakages from the canal have created lakes and ponds along the canal and the rise in groundwater has caused widespread soil salination.
 Economy and resources
The desert is crossed by the Trans-Caspian railway.
 See also
|Ad-Dahna | Alvord | Arabian | Aral Karakum | Atacama | Baja California | Barsuki | Betpak-Dala | Chalbi | Chihuahuan | Dasht-e Kavir | Dasht-e Lut | Dasht-e Margoh | Dasht-e Naomid | Gibson | Gobi | Great Basin | Great Sandy Desert | Great Victoria Desert | Kalahari | Karakum | Kyzylkum | Little Sandy Desert | Mojave | Namib | Nefud | Negev | Nubian | Ordos | Owyhee | Qaidam | Registan | Rub' al Khali | Ryn-Peski | Sahara | Saryesik-Atyrau | Sechura | Simpson | Sonoran | Strzelecki | Syrian | Taklamakan | Tanami | Thar | Tihamah | Ustyurt|