Quality matters for water scarcity

Quality requirements for water differ by intended use. Sustainable management of water resources for different uses will not only need to account for demand in water quantity, but also for water temperature and salinity, nutrient levels and other pollutants.

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Figure 1: Water quality matters for seasonal water scarcity.
Figure 2: Global distribution of the water temperature effect on water scarcity.


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S. Eisner and R.v.Beek are kindly acknowledged for providing simulations of water availability and temperature, UN GEMS/Water for supplying observed water quality records, and C. Kroeze for helpful comments on this article. M.T.H.v.V was financially supported by a Veni-grant (project no. 863.14.008) of NWO Earth and Life Sciences (ALW).

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Correspondence to Michelle T.H. van Vliet.

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van Vliet, M., Flörke, M. & Wada, Y. Quality matters for water scarcity. Nature Geosci 10, 800–802 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/ngeo3047

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