The story of the desertification of the Aral Sea in Russia is familiar to most people. Overuse of water for cotton and rice farming from the river which fed the Sea caused the area of the Sea to reduce so much that former fishing villages were left high and dry. Salt and pesticide laden winds caused many heath problems in the surrounding areas.
In the case of the Lower Lakes, if Lake Alexandrina is reduced to a series of isolated and acidified pools, and the shallower Lake Albert dries out completely, desertification would affect hundreds of thousands of people living and working in the paths of the strong prevailing winds. The moderating effects to the climate which these large bodies of water once provided would be lost, adversely impacting South Australia's high-value agricultural industries, as well as air quality in Adelaide and beyond.
The severe September 2009 dust storms on the East Coast are a powerful example of deleterious effects of windborne dust.
Dust storm, Sydney, 6am, 22 September 2009