Monday, April 10, 2023

Mapping Global Water Shortages

During this century the combination of a rising global population and the increasing effects of climate change are very likely to lead to severe shortages of many natural resources. Already the demand for water in many locations around the world exceeds the supply from groundwater and rivers. 

The National Geographic has created the World Water Map in order to help visualize where water gaps exist and explain why they arise. The map is based on a global model developed by Utrecht University, Netherlands.

The World Water Map shows the demand for water around the world and how big the gap is between that demand and an area's renewable water supply. The areas on the map are defined by individual watersheds and smaller sub-basins. As well as showing the total water gap in locations around the world the map can also visualize sub-sets of water gaps for irrigation, domestic water use, and industrial water use in the same regions.

National Geographic's map is accompanied by an explanation of what a water gap is and a closer look at some of the major water gap hotspots around the world.

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