Climate Change and Effects on Water Resources and Quality
Wednesday, March 10, 2021: 2:05 PM - 2:40 PM
Climate change affects health in myriad ways and will be an overarching component as we seek to sustain public health, now and in the future. Water availability and quality are essential for a healthy population, but both are impacted by a changing climate. In the last century, increases in both drought and extreme precipitation have become increasingly common and are expected to increase with projected changes in climate. Along with these changes in the hydrological cycle are subsequent effects on water quality. In surface waters, drought conditions may serve to concentrate contaminants, whereas extreme precipitation events may facilitate their introduction. Extreme precipitation and flooding can further impact water resources by straining water infrastructure leading to sewage leaks and discharge. These events contribute to increased risk of exposure to chemical contaminants and enteric pathogens, which are introduced directly, and to toxic algae, which are supported by the influx of nutrients. Understanding the role of climate in water resources and effects on water quality is an important part of developing a resilient water infrastructure to protect public health.
Keywords: Please select up to 4 keywords ONLY:
Environmental - Water