As groundwater depletes, arid American West is moving east

ScienceDaily | Feb 14, 2020 at 7:22 AM
  • The results, published today in Nature Communications, show that as warming temperatures shift the balance between water supply and demand, shallow groundwater storage can buffer plant water stress — but only where shallow groundwater connections are present, and not indefinitely.
  • Even with a modest 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming, 119 million cubic meters of storage were lost from groundwater — or four times the volume of Lake Powell, the largest reservoir in the Upper Colorado basin.
  • At 4 degrees Celsius, groundwater losses were projected at 324 million cubic meters — roughly 10 times the volume of Lake Powell or enough to fill nearly three-quarters of Lake Erie.