Why doesn't the level of water in seas and oceans rise even though most of the rivers drain their water into it?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The water that flows in the form of rivers originates from the seas and oceans. Water evaporates from the seas and oceans due to the heat from the sun and clouds are formed. When the temperature is right the vapor in the clouds is precipitated as rain or snow. This creates glaciers from which many rivers originate or falls on the land creating small water channels which gradually link up and form rivers.

There is no increase in the water level of oceans as the process of evaporation of water and the inflow of water from rivers goes on at the same time. Even if there is a net difference in the rates of the two, the volume of water in the oceans is so large that a small excess or deficit will not create a noticeable difference in their level.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
Soaring plane image

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial