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water : the liquid that descends from the clouds as rain, forms streams, lakes, and seas, and is a major constituent of all living matter and that when pure is an odorless, tasteless, very slightly compressible liquid oxide of hydrogen H2O which appears bluish in thick layers, freezes at 0° C and boils at 100° C, has a maximum density at 4° C and a high specific heat, is feebly ionized to hydrogen and hydroxyl ions, and is a poor conductor of electricity and a good solvent — Webster

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Water is a transparent, tasteless, odorless, and nearly colorless chemical substance, which is the main constituent of Earth’s streams, lakes, and oceans, and the fluids of most living organisms. It is vital for all known forms of life, even though it provides no calories or organic nutrients. Its chemical formula is H2O, meaning that each of its molecules contains one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms connected by covalent bonds. Water is the name of the liquid state of H2O at standard ambient temperature and pressure. It forms precipitation in the form of rain and aerosols in the form of fog. Clouds are formed from suspended droplets of water and ice, its solid state. When finely divided, crystalline ice may precipitate in the form of snow. The gaseous state of water is steam or water vapor. Water moves continually through the water cycle of evaporation, transpiration (evapotranspiration), condensation, precipitation, and runoff, usually reaching the sea.

Water covers 71% of the Earth’s surface, mostly in seas and oceans. Small portions of water occur as groundwater (1.7%), in the glaciers and the ice caps of Antarctica and Greenland (1.7%), and in the air as vapor, clouds (formed of ice and liquid water suspended in air), and precipitation (0.001%).

Water plays an important role in the world economy. Approximately 70% of the freshwater used by humans goes to agriculture. Fishing in salt and fresh water bodies is a major source of food for many parts of the world. Much of long-distance trade of commodities (such as oil and natural gas) and manufactured products is transported by boats through seas, rivers, lakes, and canals. Large quantities of water, ice, and steam are used for cooling and heating, in industry and homes. Water is an excellent solvent for a wide variety of chemical substances; as such it is widely used in industrial processes, and in cooking and washing. Water is also central to many sports and other forms of entertainment, such as swimming, pleasure boating, boat racing, surfing, sport fishing, and diving. — Wikipedia

Encyclopædia Britannica

Hydrosphere is the combined mass of water found on, under, and above the surface of a planet, minor planet or natural satellite. Although the hydrosphere has been around for longer than 4 billion years, it continues to change in size. This is caused by the seafloor spreading and the continental drift, which rearranges the land and ocean.

It has been estimated that there are 1,386 million cubic kilometers of water on Earth. This includes water in liquid and frozen forms in groundwater, oceans, lakes and streams. Saltwater accounts for 97.5% of this amount. Vapor is another form water is in, caused by a rapid increase in particles transferred by heat. Fresh water accounts for only 2.5%. Of this fresh water, 68.9% is in the form of ice and snow cover in the Arctic, the Antarctic, and mountain glaciers. 30.8% is in the form of fresh groundwater. Only 0.3% of the fresh water on Earth is in easily accessible lakes, reservoirs and river systems. The total mass of the Earth’s hydrosphere is about 1.4 × 1018 tonnes, which is about 0.023% of Earth’s total mass. About 20 × 1012 tonnes of this is in Earth’s atmosphere (for practical purposes, 1 cubic meter of water weighs one tonne). Approximately 71% of Earth’s surface, an area of some 361 million square kilometers (139.5 million square miles), is covered by ocean. The average salinity of Earth’s oceans is about 35 grams of salt per kilogram of sea water (3.5%). — Wikipedia

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Hydrology is the scientific study of the movement, distribution, and quality of water on Earth and other planets, including the water cycle, water resources and environmental watershed sustainability. A practitioner of hydrology is a hydrologist, working within the fields of earth or environmental science, physical geography, geology or civil and environmental engineering. Using various analytical methods and scientific techniques, they collect and analyze data to help solve water related problems such as environmental preservation, natural disasters, and water management. Hydrology subdivides into surface water hydrology, groundwater hydrology (hydrogeology), and marine hydrology. Domains of hydrology include hydrometeorology, surface hydrology, hydrogeology, drainage-basin management and water quality, where water plays the central role. — Wikipedia

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Water News -- ScienceDaily Learn about Earth's water resources. Read current research on the water cycle, water pollution, groundwater depletion and lake protection.

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  • Monsoon rains have become more intense in the...
    on July 23, 2019 at 3:05 pm

    Monsoon rain storms have become more intense in the southwestern United States in recent decades, according to a recent study. Monsoon rains -- highly localized bursts of rain -- have become stronger since the 1970s, meaning the same amount of rain falls in a shorter amount of time -- by 6 to 11 percent. In addition, the number of rainfall events per year increased on average 15 percent during the 1961-2017 period. […]

  • North Carolina coastal flooding is worsening with...
    on July 23, 2019 at 12:59 pm

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Phys.org - latest science and technology news stories Phys.org internet news portal provides the latest news on science including: Physics, Nanotechnology, Life Sciences, Space Science, Earth Science, Environment, Health and Medicine.

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    on July 2, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    NASA's satellite imagery and model forecasts regularly help agricultural and aid agencies to monitor the performance of crops worldwide and prepare for food shortages. […]

  • Why is the Earth's F/Cl ratio not chondritic?
    on July 1, 2019 at 1:19 pm

    Primitive chondrites, un-molten stony meteorites, are believed to be the building blocks of the Earth. Because terrestrial planets have experienced chemical differentiation in the core, mantle, and hydrosphere, the elemental abundance pattern of some elements at the planetary surface is not chondritic. In other words, the non-chondritic abundance pattern of elements on the planetary surface is a key to understanding the chemical differentiation processes of terrestrial planets. […]

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    on January 23, 2019 at 6:00 pm

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    on November 30, 2018 at 7:01 pm

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  • The first rains in centuries in the Atacama...
    on November 15, 2018 at 11:06 am

    The Atacama Desert, the driest and oldest desert on Earth, located in northern Chile, hides a hyper-arid core in which no rain has been recorded during the past 500 years. But this situation has changed in the last three years. For the first time, rainfall has been documented in the hyper-arid core of the Atacama, and contrary to what was expected, the water supply has caused a great devastation among local life. This is the main conclusion of an international study, published today in […]