Glossary

Terms and definitions beginning with the letter "D":

Dam
Structure built to hold back a flow of water
Delta
Fan-shaped area at the mouth of a river formed by deposition of sediments
Demand management
Measures taken to predict and meet consumer demand for environmentally sensitive goods such as water, e.g. through activities that alter water use
Depletion
The loss of water from surface water reservoirs or groundwater aquifers due to usage at a greater rate than they are recharged
Deposition
The gradual dropping or laying down of matter by a natural process, or getting rid of sediments as performed by an agent of erosion, such as a river or glacier; also called sedimentation
Desalination
The process of removing salt from seawater or brackish water
Desertification
Land degradation in arid, semi-arid and dry sub-humid areas resulting from various factors, including climatic variations and human activities
Developed water
Water that is produced or brought into a water system through the efforts of people (where it would not have entered the water system on its own accord)
Disbursement
The action of paying out money
Discharge
The amount of water flowing past a location in a river or stream in a certain amount of time; usually expressed in volumes (liters per second or gallons per minute)
Drainage basin
All the land that serves as the drainage area of a specific stream or river; See Basin
Drip irrigation
Common method of irrigation, in which water trickles slowly through pipes or tubes onto crops. Drip irrigation is a low-pressure method of irrigation with the advantage that less water is lost to evaporation than with high-pressure spray
Drought
The naturally occurring phenomenon that exists when precipitation has been significantly below normal recorded levels, causing serious hydrological imbalances that adversely affect land resource production systems
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