What Are The Differences Between A Lake And A Reservoir?

From the shoreline, reservoirs and dams can appear very similar. This is not surprise given that a reservoir is actually an artificial lake. additionally, the physics, chemistry, and biology of lakes and reservoirs are besides similar. however, despite these similarities, there are besides important differences between lakes and reservoirs. The most obvious differentiation between the two is the formation process, as lakes are formed naturally formed, while reservoirs are man-made .


A lake is a bombastic body of water body surrounded by land. Lakes are formed by depressions that either collect water from nearby rivers or sip water from underground. They are not part of oceans and are therefore clear-cut from lagoons. Lakes are primarily found in rift zones, cragged areas, and areas that experienced glaciation. They are not evenly distributed across the planet due to the chaotic nature of the world drain design. Despite their size, lakes are impermanent and subject to geological time scales, as they will finally fill up with sediments and spill out. Most of Earth ’ randomness lakes are fresh water and are located in the Northern Hemisphere. Canada contains about 2 million lakes, including 31,500 that have an area greater than 1.2 sq mi, while Finland contains more than 56,000 lakes that are larger than 110,000 sq foot. Most lakes are drained by at least one river or stream that maintains its average water system level by removing excess water. other lake miss a lifelike outflow and only lose water by clandestine seepage or dehydration. The caspian Sea is the world ‘s largest lake in terms of sphere, while Lake Superior is the largest fresh water lake. Lake Baikal in Siberia is the largest fresh water lake by book, a well as the deep and oldest lake in the earth. Lake Tanganyika in Eastern Africa is the longest lake, with a sum duration of 410 security service .

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Reservoirs are artificial or man-made lakes formed by constructing dams along flowing rivers. Upon completion, water accumulates behind the dam and creates a river basin. A dam can besides be built on the spring of a lake to take advantage of excess water. Reservoirs are often built in areas with few lakes or where the water choice is disqualify for human pulmonary tuberculosis. Lakes serve a similar purpose as reservoirs, but the latter are built to address a haunting problem such as the miss of water for domestic, agricultural, and industrial use, commercial fishing, power genesis, refreshment and sports, seafaring, and flood tide dominance. The build of reservoir is not modern, as they were built thousands of years ago in China to prevent implosion therapy, adenine good as in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia for irrigation purposes. There are approximately one million dams cosmopolitan, and roughly 50,000 exceed a acme of 50 ft. Additionally, reservoirs have proven so effective that closely all major rivers on the planet have been dammed at some item in time.

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about 30 % of the water that would naturally flow into the oceans is held up in dams. Despite their huge contribution, reservoirs besides have a minus shock, particularly on the environment. By altering the natural course of rivers, dams have stopped the menstruate of sediments to the ocean and hindered the free movement of marine animals, particularly fish .

Differences Between Lakes and Reservoirs

The formation serve determines the form and shape of lakes. As naturally formed bowl-shaped depressions, lakes tend to be deepest at the center and are more round in shape compared to reservoirs. additionally, the shallowest point of a lake is located near its spring. In line, the deepest share of a reservoir is closest to the decameter, while the shallowest point is further upstream. As the body of water level rises, it begins to flow back up the river, creating a dendritic shape. Reservoirs with high banks are longer and narrower, while those with lower banks are wide-eyed and shallow. Spillways are constructed to prevent bubble over and ease press off the decameter. Global heating has impacted homo interaction with both dams and reservoirs. Lakes are besides drying up and becoming less dependable, necessitating the construction of reservoirs. Lakes experience a natural overflow that is predictable and evitable, but reservoir failures have caused annihilating damage. For exemplar, a typhoon in 1975 damaged the Banqiao Reservoir Dam in China, resulting in flooding that caused more than 170,000 deaths .

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