World’s major rivers ‘drying up’
The researchers analysed water flows in more than 900 rivers over a 50-year period to 2004.
They found that there was an overall decline in the amount of water flowing into the world’s oceans.
Much of the reduction has been caused by human activities such as the building of dams and the diversion of water for agriculture.
But the researchers highlighted the contribution of climate change, saying that rising temperatures were altering rainfall patterns and increasing rates of evaporation.
The authors say they are concerned that the decline in freshwater sources will continue with serious repercussions for a growing global population.