Water is everywhere.
But when it rains it pales.
That’s why the world is in for a winter wonderland in which, thanks to the Earth’s natural water cycle, we’ll never have to worry about the water levels of our taps.
In fact, according to the latest data from the US Geological Survey, our rivers and lakes will be the least likely to flood in years to come.
The report, released Thursday, is based on the US National Climate Assessment, a study of climate change scenarios published last year.
As of 2020, it shows, our lakes and rivers are the least affected by global warming, with a projected drop of less than 1 centimetre in the amount of water flowing in the river system.
The lakes and streams in the US have been largely spared, but the report also shows that in the next 15 years, more than a third of the rivers and streams it studied will be underwater, with the vast majority of the water flowing underground.
The study is the first of its kind to examine the water cycle for the entire globe, rather than just the US, which is where most of the world’s population lives.
The results are not what we were expecting, said co-author Michael Eisner, a hydrologist at the USGS.
“I was a little bit surprised by the magnitude of the effects, because there was very little to be concerned about,” he said.
“But we think it’s going to be an ongoing issue over the next several decades.”
What the study found There are two main ways to look at this: the freshwater equivalent of a dam or a flood control measure, which takes into account water levels in streams, lakes and reservoirs; and a flood model that takes into consideration the amount and frequency of floods and how they affect downstream communities.
The new report finds that the flood model underestimates the amount that would be lost by flooding rivers and other bodies of water, especially in regions with low water levels.
In other words, the model is not as accurate as it could be.
It also makes some errors, such as ignoring the effect of melting glaciers, which could be expected to cause rivers to lose more water.
It is likely to lead to more flooding in some areas, especially if the US continues to have more snow in the spring and summer than in the summer.
But, according the study, that will not necessarily be the case.
“We can’t say for sure that the models are the correct way to look,” Eisner said.
Instead, the report is based largely on the findings of the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Water Resources Management Policy Assessment for 2040, which was released in 2015.
“The policy assessment did not address any of the issues that we’ve raised in our report,” said Jason Smith, a water resources scientist at the University of Colorado Boulder.
In particular, it does not consider what would happen if the water in reservoirs and lakes were to become unstable.
This means that the EPA assumes that the rate of erosion and sediment build-up would increase, rather, that the water would stay stable.
“If the water level in the system is higher than it would be in the absence of a climate change scenario, the system will become unstable,” Smith said.
If this is the case, the US is facing a very real and significant risk of flooding.
In many areas, such damage to infrastructure could be catastrophic, including roads, bridges and pipelines, which are already crumbling.
In some regions, such flooding could even cause widespread damage to crops and livestock.
As the report says, the EPA’s projections are “conservative” because they assume a 20 per cent reduction in the rate and intensity of extreme precipitation events in the 21st century.
The EPA has also made several adjustments to its projections, including changing the amount by which the agency assumes the system becomes more stable, which it had already assumed.
But this does not necessarily mean that the projections are correct.
As well, the agency’s projection of sea level rise in the United States is based upon a lower number than the reality, which puts it at about 1.5 metres by 2080.
The fact that sea level is rising at a faster rate in the future means that some areas of the country are already going to face significant flooding, said Steve Tinsley, a scientist at Climate Central.
“It is going to put some people out of work,” he added.
The impact on the environment The study found that the US will be able to meet its water conservation goals for the rest of this century.
It expects that the world will increase its use of water conservation measures by 50 per cent between 2020 and 2030, and by more than 200 per cent by 2050.
It predicts that by the end of this decade, almost two-thirds of all water will be diverted to irrigation.
But it also points out that even without water conservation, the country is already suffering from water scarcity.
For example, in the West, the population