Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

Health Implications of Drought: Water

Reduced stream and river flows can increase the concentration of pollutants in water and cause stagnation. Higher water temperatures in lakes and reservoirs lead to reduced oxygen levels. These levels can affect fish and other aquatic life and water quality.

Runoff from drought-related wildfires can carry extra sediment, ash, charcoal, and woody debris to surface waters, killing fish and other aquatic life by decreasing oxygen levels in the water. Many parts of the United States depend on groundwater as a primary source of water. Over time, reduced precipitation and increased evaporation of surface water mean that groundwater supplies are not replenished at a typical rate.

Learn more about groundwater