Researchers Map Out Fresh-Water Reservoirs For the First Time

Sunday, June 23, 2019 - 10:46

Researchers of Columbia University and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution have succeeded in mapping out fresh-water reservoirs for the first time.

It turns out the subterranean pools stretch for at least 50 miles off the US Atlantic coast, containing vast stores of low-salinity groundwater, about twice the volume of Lake Ontario, Quartz reports.

The deposits begin about 600 ft (183 m) below the seafloor and stretch for hundreds of miles. That rivals the size of even the largest terrestrial aquifers.

“We knew there was fresh water down there in isolated places, but we did not know the extent or geometry,” said lead author Chloe Gustafson, a PhD candidate at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, according to Phys.org. “It could turn out to be an important resource in other parts of the world.”

The size and extent of the freshwater deposits suggest they are also being fed by modern-day runoff from land—and may exist elsewhere with similar topography.

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