Statistics Canada has issued an alarming report warning that southern Canada is losing renewable fresh water at the rate of 3.5% a year.
The Statistics Canada study of southern Canada’s water yield — the amount of water that falls as rain, melts from snow and ice packs and flows through rivers and streams — found that it has declined 8.5 per cent since 1971.
That amounts to 3.5 cubic kilometres a year on average, the federal statistical agency said, enough water to fill 1.4 million Olympic-sized swimming pools every year over the past three decades.
The Statistics Canada study looked at water yields between 1971 and 2004 across southern Canada, where 98 per cent of Canadians live.
Heather Dewar, an analyst for the agency, said water yield does not include large existing bodies of water like the Great Lakes.
“It’s all the water that flows into the system,” she said in an interview with CTV.ca.
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