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As South Africa’s Cape Town counts down the days to their inevitable “day zero,” when it becomes the first major city to run out of water, it is a good time for the rest of the world to keep an eye out for their supply.

Despite Canada being known to have a plentiful amount of fresh water thanks to our many lakes, rivers, and glaciers, scientists say that some significant climate changes are affecting the way the water flows.

Canada Research Chair in Water Resources and Climate Change, John Pomeroy, has been keeping a close watch on how the water flows out of the Rockies.  These glacial waters are vital as they feed into all three of Canada’s oceans and make up a significant portion of the nation’s fresh water supply.

What scientists and researchers are concerned about is the climate shift that has the snowpack in the mountains melting earlier in the season and at a much faster rate.  River basins are becoming flooded too early, and there isn’t enough water to keep them going through the summer.

Professor of Geography Shawn Marshall estimates that 80% of the ice that makes up our giant glaciers will be gone by the end of the century.  That estimation could be a lot worse if the climate continues to shift as drastically as it has been.

It is more important now more than ever to take care of the Earth’s resources and stop taking our fresh water for granted.