Climate change is drying up some of the world’s rivers… Check out these 6 from space!

Deepak Gupta
Deepak Gupta August 21, 2022
Updated 2022/08/21 at 7:53 PM

The consequences of climate change are blatantly visible and the last summers have been clear proof of that. One of the most glaring examples is the drought, which has raised concerns and prompted warnings: the world’s rivers are drying up and the differences are already evident.

With images captured from space, see how these six rivers are doing.




River drought is already evident

The heat waves we have known don't just consume humans. On the contrary, they impact nature in a way that is already impossible to ignore. Along with them, the lack of rain also contributes to worrying droughts and the consequent lack of water.

Because it is not a small problem, rivers all over the world are feeling the effect of climate change and seeing their flow significantly reduced. From the United States of America to Asia, not excluding Europe, many rivers are being harmed by climate change, which consequently affects the lives of the human beings who depend on them - whether for access to drinking water, irrigation of food , energy or freight transport.

Faced with this drought scenario, the CNN compiled images of six rivers seen from space. We share it now with you.

Colorado River

As the historic drought in the western United States shows little sign of abating, the Colorado River is drying up and thinning. Essentially, it is maintained by two of the largest reservoirs in the country, one of which, Lake Mead, is shrinking in size as water levels drop.

Although water levels have been falling since the year 2000, this has increased in 2020.

There are about 40 million people, without seven US states and Mexico, dependent on the river for access to water, for agriculture and for electricity. In order to safeguard the watershed, the government implemented mandatory water cuts and asked states to submit additional action plans.

Yangtze River

It is in Asia and is seeing its shores drying up. Although its bed is emerging in some areas, its tributaries are extremely dry. Sichuan province, which is home to 84 million people, has received half the rain it normally receives and there are reservoirs that have dried up completely.

The impact of the drought on the Yangtze River has been enormous, according to CNN. In Sichuan, hydropower accounts for about 80% of electrical capacity, much of which comes from the river.

For the first time in years, China has issued a national drought alert in response to the longest heat wave in six decades.

Reno river

From the Swiss Alps to the North Sea, via Germany and the Netherlands, the River Rhine is a crucial channel for European shipping. However, at the moment, it has not responded in the most encouraging way: parts of its bed have emerged above the surface of the water, so ships trying to navigate it are forced to circumvent a set of obstacles, delaying the entire process.

Low water levels represent a higher cost for companies that want to navigate them, passing that cost on to consumers.

Rio Po

This river is fed by snow from the Alps and spring rains, and has a steep drop that guarantees a fast flow. Like the ones we saw earlier, its appearance already accounts for the drought it is subject to.

One of the big problems is that millions of people depend on the Po River, mainly for agriculture. In fact, CNN reports that about 30% of Italian food is produced along the river and some of the country's exports, such as Parmesan cheese, are made there.

Loire River

The Loire supports the vineyard valley where some of the most famous wines in the world are produced and, being considered the last wild river in France, it supports ecosystems throughout the entire valley. Some of its parts are so dry that people can already cross on foot.

The patches of earth around the River Loire are brown and withered, whereas a year ago they were green and lush.

river Danube

It is the longest river in Western Europe and a crucial navigation channel that passes through 10 countries. Although it is not in as bad a condition as other European rivers, the truth is that countries, such as Hungary, are so dependent on it for tourism, for example, that the impacts are already being felt.

In Romania, Serbia and Bulgaria, workers are dredging the river to ensure that vessels can still navigate it.

Rivers adorn many landscapes and dazzle even those who are less impressionable. In addition to their visual aspect, they are crucial to the development of some activities and guaranteeing the quality of life of many people around the world. Climate change is harming them and, as we have seen, eliminating some.

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