The industrial development in the past few centuries has changed not only the way we function and the quality of our life, but the environment too. Unfortunately, the difference with reference to the nature and its state is not a positive one. In the course of mankind’s agricultural, industrial and other activities we have been throwing away huge amounts of waste, we allow the emission of noxious gases and harm our surroundings in various other ways. This has changed the world climate which in turn has numerous consequences. The air and the aquatic basins have become warmer and have turned into a not so hospitable habitat for the different species. The average rainfall or snowfall has changed and the sea level is observed to have been steadily rising.
The Water Cycle
Basically, it is the relationship between precipitation and evaporation. Since it has become warmer on earth, the evaporation has been happening at an accelerated speed. This means that there are and will be more and more areas affected by droughts and others devastated by too much precipitation.
In the past several decades, the winters have been quite warmer. This change has led to the state in which more rain than snow falls. In addition, when the temperatures are higher in the winter, the existing snow starts melting earlier and faster thus affecting the period of streamflow in the rivers.
Impact on the Quantity
Without H2O life on this planet is impossible. Clean aquatic resources are vital. They are necessary so as the ecosystems to function properly and ensure their existence. They are crucial for our physical survival because, without them, we will be subject to diseases. We need them for our economic survival too as without them, it will be impossible to execute agricultural and manufacturing activities.
However, since the climate change has started showing its adverse effects, we are faced with a huge problem. The aquatic resources are fewer but the demand is larger due to the fact that the population on earth is soaring and the industries and the agricultural producers are increasing in numbers.
This is alarming because the rainfall in the last several decades is less, especially during the hotter months, and it is very difficult for the responsible bodies to satisfy the need.
The warmer temperatures have done another damage which is related to the level of the seas which is slowly but surely rising. As this process is taking place, it causes the sea liquids to find their way to rivers or other freshwater zones. This makes the process of ensuring drinking resources very difficult and costly because the suppliers are forced to search for alternative sources or resort to desalination techniques. Different methods should be developed and implemented so as to ensure conservation or recycling of H2O supplies so as to be better managed.
Impact on the Quality
The rise of the level of the sea is a global concern. However, in some places, the people have more things to be worried about. There are locations where the runoff is in bigger quantities and the floods are something which happens on a regular basis. It is these places where the quality of the drinking resources has greatly deteriorated. This puts the health of people and animals at risk and leads to a lot of expenses which need to be made so as efficient treatment equipment to be ensured.
When the atmospheric temperature is higher, it is normal the temperature of everything in the nature to increase too. This holds true with reference to the aquatic basins. Unfortunately, some species living in them are incapable of adapting to the change and die. For example, the trout is a typical representative of a fish which thrives in cold rivers and it is difficult for it to live in warmer basins. Furthermore, this condition of the rivers and streams may allow many non–indigenous types of fish to settle there. This is not beneficial for the native animals at all because they will have to compete with the newcomers for food or, they themselves may become a source of food.
Another problem which is worth mentioning is that if there is more rain or snow in areas which are not used to this, different infrastructure difficulties may arise. The treatment facilities and the sewer systems will not be able to handle the situation and there will be a lot of untreated runoff in lakes and rivers. When there is a huge quantity of runoff in the aquatic bodies, this means that there will be an increased presence of different types of waste, nutrients and other chemicals which deteriorate the condition of the potable resources and pose a serious threat to our health.
What is more, when exercising our activities and satisfying our daily drinking needs, we consume larger quantities of water annually. This means, especially in coastal areas, that we make room for the salt liquids in the rivers. The consequences of this force us to spend more resources on treatment and desalination equipment.
The acidification of the ocean happens when there are too many sulphide substances in it. The oceans absorb huge quantities of carbon dioxide which is a product of our activities. The more the CO2 in the oceans, the lower their pH. In short, the acidification brings about chemical changes which severely damage the marine life.
Changes on Different Spheres
Our health is not the only thing that the climate change is going to deteriorate. The ecosystems on one hand and the industries and farmers, on the other, will also going to suffer losses. For example, when the stream flows are lower or irregular, they can impede the generation of hydropower, also the power plants which operate with fossil fuel or nuclear resources will be impossible to cool.
The recreation sphere is also going to face difficulties due to the change of the climate. That is so because the quality of the aquatic bodies which are used for fishing or swimming will be poor. Furthermore, although people employ different technologies (for example snow-making machines) so as to make winter sports possible even when there are not good conditions , there still will be places where it will be impossible for people to practise.
Finally, the climate change will place our survival at stake because it threatens the agricultural production. When there is no or too much rain, the crops are failing, the livestock does not receive proper care and the soil suffers erosion.