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Recent studies of ancient Maya water management have found that the urban architecture of some cities was used to divert rainfall runoff into gravity-fed systems of interconnected reservoirs. In the central and southern May Lowlands, this kind of water control was necessary to support large populations throughout the year due to the scarcity of perennial surface water and the seasonal availability of rainfall. Some scholars argue that the concentration of water within the urban core of these sites provided a centralized source of political authority for Maya elites based largely on controlled water access. Such an argument is plausible; however, it is less useful for understanding the sociopolitical implications of water use and control in other, water-rich parts of the Maya region.