October 2010 Mission – The Rivers

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Rivers are the arteries of our planet

The steady flow of clean, fresh water is an essential element for vast ecosystems and the health and survival of billions of people.

A river may have its source in a spring, lake, from damp, boggy places where the soil is waterlogged, from glacial meltwater, or simply from rain flowing off impermeable rock or man-made surfaces. Almost all rivers are joined by other rivers and streams, termed “tributaries’, the highest of which are known as headwaters. Water may also be recruited to a river from ground-water sources.

Floodplains and deltas
A river’s water is generally confined to a channel, made up of a stream bed between banks, but in larger rivers there is also a wider floodplain shaped by flood-waters over-topping the channel.
Flood plains may be very wide in relation to the size of the river channel. This distinction between river channel…

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