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Tropical lakes may emit more methane

Methane is not the most abundant greenhouse gas in our atmosphere, but it is among the most potent. Roughly a quarter of global methane emissions come from natural sources, and freshwater ecosystems are the largest source ...

NASA data helps builds resilience as disasters grow more intense

In a decade filled by record-breaking events including raging wildfires, numerous hurricanes, unseasonal flooding and historically cold temperatures, NASA has continued to learn more about how the planet is changing and the ...

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Lake

A lake (from Latin lacus) is a terrain feature (or physical feature), a body of liquid on the surface of a world that is localized to the bottom of basin (another type of landform or terrain feature; that is, it is not global) and moves slowly if it moves at all. On Earth, a body of water is considered a lake when it is inland, not part of the ocean, is larger and deeper than a pond, and is fed by a river. The only world other than Earth known to harbor lakes is Titan, Saturn's largest moon, which has lakes of ethane, most likely mixed with methane. It is not known if Titan's lakes are fed by rivers, though Titan's surface is carved by numerous river beds.

Natural lakes on Earth are generally found in mountainous areas, rift zones, and areas with ongoing or recent glaciation. Other lakes are found in endorheic basins or along the courses of mature rivers. In some parts of the world, there are many lakes because of chaotic drainage patterns left over from the last Ice Age. All lakes are temporary over geologic time scales, as they will slowly fill in with sediments or spill out of the basin containing them.

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