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New Study Says Earth Has 117 Million Lakes Post Posted: Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:34 pm 
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At last scientist have pinned down the number of lakes that exist on Earth, its a grand total of 117 million.

David Seekell, an environmental scientist at Umea University in Sweden said that most of the world's lakes are in places where humans don't live.

He said, "This is something one would have assumed had been done long ago, and was in a textbook somewhere."

'LiveScience' reported that earlier estimates were statistical guesses, based on the number of lakes in a parcel of land or on average lake size, which changed to an accurate counting lake by lake. One widely cited study from 2006 estimated the lake total at 304 million.

The new study used high-resolution satellite data and supercomputers to discover that there are 117 million lakes in the world.

The bodies of water cover more land (3.7 per cent of Earth's surface) than previous studies had predicted.

Cory McDonald, a research scientist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, said, 'This is because quite a few medium- to large-size lakes were missing from older databases'.

However, the study found that about 90 million of the lakes fall in the smallest size category, measuring 0.5 to 2.5 acres (0.2 to 1 hectare).

"Most lakes are in the far North, and there's actually quite a few of them," said Seekell.

As per the new results, the world's lakes cover about 5 million square kilometres, which is 3.7 per cent of the land uncapped by glaciers.

Study says that most lakes are in the Northern Hemisphere between 45 degrees north latitude and 75 degrees north latitude.

The researchers said, this results from the tectonic scattering of continental landmasses and the past positions of glaciers.

In the southern high latitudes land is less and North's sizable plains were scraped by ice age glaciers, leaving behind millions of pothole lakes.

Study says also says that the majority (85 per cent) of Earth's millions of lakes are at low altitudes, found at elevations less than 1,600 feet above sea level.

The study excluded the Caspian Sea, the world's largest lake, which covers an area of about 371,000 square km. Antarctica and Greenland were also excluded from the new study.

 
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