World's Groundwater Is Being Over-Exploited, Scientists Say

"LONDON -- The world is depleting underground water reserves faster than they can be replenished due to over-exploitation, according to scientists in Canada and the Netherlands."

"The researchers, from McGill University in Montreal and Utrecht University in the Netherlands, combined groundwater usage data from around the globe with computer models of underground water resources to come up with a measure of water usage relative to supply.

That measure shows the groundwater footprint -- the area above ground that relies on water from underground sources -- is about 3.5 times bigger than the aquifers themselves.

The research suggests about 1.7 billion people, mostly in Asia, are living in areas where underground water reserves and the ecosystems that rely on them are under threat, they said."

Chris Wickham reports for Reuters August 8, 2012.


"Here's Where Farms Are Sucking The Planet Dry" (The Salt/NPR)

"Groundwater Over-Exploited in Agricultural Regions, Study Finds" (Los Angeles Times)

Source: Reuters, 08/09/2012