Due to demand for summer vacation apartments by the locals, and since necessary precautions are not taken and public attention is minimal in this part of Turkey, the ecosystem around Akgöl Lake and Paradeniz Lagoon is in heavy danger.
In 1190, while on the Third Crusade, Emperor Frederick Barbarossa drowned in the river, then known as Saleph within the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia. Having defeated the forces of the Sultanate of Rum at the Battle of Iconium, the emperor continued his campaign to the Holy Land and arrived on the banks of the river on June 10. Several contradictory statements reflect the circumstances of his death, which have not been conclusively established. According to some sources, he was lost in the current when he tried to cross the water near Silifke; other chronicles report he wished to cool down from the heat of the day and suffered a heart attack while taking a bath.
Once without a leader, his crusader's army dispersed, the remnants later joined the Siege of Acre. A monument in Barbarossa's honor was erected on the road from Silifke to Mut.