Reduced Snow Pack & Early Run Off
About 1% of all the water on earth is fresh water that we can actually use. This water is accessible through freshwater sources like lakes and rivers. It is naturally stored as snow pack and in groundwater reserves (aquifers).
Rhonda Hardesty / Fantasy Artz Studio
One-third of Earth's largest groundwater basins are being rapidly depleted says 2015 study. These groundwater reserves take thousands of years to accumulate and only slowly recharge with water from snowmelt and rains.
Warmer temperatures mean more precipitation will fall as rain, not snow, and more snow will melt in earlier months when it is not yet needed. Reduced snow pack and changes in runoff cycles immediately affect mountain ecosystems and cause domino-ing issues throughout the water-use-cycle.