Human Appropriation of Renewable Fresh Water

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  09 Feb 1996:
Vol. 271, Issue 5250, pp. 785-788
DOI: 10.1126/science.271.5250.785


Humanity now uses 26 percent of total terrestrial evapotranspiration and 54 percent of runoff that is geographically and temporally accessible. Increased use of evapotranspiration will confer minimal benefits globally because most land suitable for rain-fed agriculture is already in production. New dam construction could increase accessible runoff by about 10 percent over the next 30 years, whereas population is projected to increase by more than 45 percent during that period.

Stay Connected to Science