What is Runoff?
Runoff is a stream of rainwater that circulates on the surface of the earth when it overflows a natural or superficial deposit . Runoff can also be known as runoff or spillway.
Runoff is a stream of water that originates from rainfall that circulates and spreads over the soil once the evaporation and infiltration capacity has been exceeded.
Therefore, the runoff that runs through the ground and expands freely is of utmost importance for the human being because it mainly allows the collection of water.
Hence, in ancient civilizations, water drains were built that were intended to irrigate crops, for the use and consumption of people, generate energy or perform various jobs.
Furthermore, runoff is what feeds rivers, seas, oceans, reservoirs or basins. It is also the cause of the erosion of various terrains.
Factors that affect runoff
It is worth mentioning that runoff is directly affected by four natural factors, which are:
Meteorological factor: varies according to the intensity of rainfall and changes in temperature.
Geographic factor: refers to the geographical area and its morphology.
Hydrogeological factor: refers to the permeability of the soil, its layers and depth.
Biological factor: it has to do with the surface of the vegetation and the actions of the human being.
Types of runoff
There are two types of runoff that vary according to their origin, among them are surface runoff and underground runoff.
Surface runoff is the fastest there is and is the main cause of soil erosion. This derives from rainfall, melting of snow and glaciers. These runoffs are those that reach the oceans, rivers and seas. This runoff can also generate various plant damages.
On the other hand, it should be remembered that surface runoff is also affected by human activity, therefore, it carries garbage, chemicals and other waste that negatively affects water and the environment.
Underground runoff is what occurs below ground once water has infiltrated. In this case, the water circulates horizontally and can then flow back outside in the form of a spring.
Underground runoff infiltrates soils at deep levels where it can circulate as drainage. This runoff is much slower than surface runoff.