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Water
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This article is about general aspects of water. For a detailed discussion of its
physical and chemical properties, see Properties of water. For other uses, see
Water (disambiguation).

Water in three states: liquid, solid (ice), and gas (invisible water vapor in t
he air). Clouds are accumulations of water droplets, condensed from vapor-satura
ted air.
File:Water Video.webm
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Video demonstrating states of water present in domestic life.


Water (chemical formula: H2O) is a transparent fluid which forms the world's str
eams, lakes, oceans and rain, and is the major constituent of the fluids of orga
nisms. As a chemical compound, a water molecule contains one oxygen and two hydr
ogen atoms that are connected by covalent bonds. Water is a liquid at standard a
mbient temperature and pressure, but it often co-exists on Earth with its solid
state, ice; and gaseous state, steam (water vapor). It also exists as snow, fog,
dew and cloud.
Water covers 71% of the Earth's surface.[1] It is vital for all known forms of l
ife. On Earth, 96.5% of the planet's water is found in seas and oceans, 1.7% in
groundwater, 1.7% in glaciers and the ice caps of Antarctica and Greenland, a sm
all fraction in other large water bodies, and 0.001% in the air as vapor, clouds
(formed of ice and liquid water suspended in air), and precipitation.[2][3] Onl
y 2.5% of the Earth's water is freshwater, and 98.8% of that water is in ice (ex
cepting ice in clouds) and groundwater. Less than 0.3% of all freshwater is in r
ivers, lakes, and the atmosphere, and an even smaller amount of the Earth's fres
hwater (0.003%) is contained within biological bodies and manufactured products.
[2]
Water on Earth moves continually through the water cycle of evaporation and tran
spiration (evapotranspiration), condensation, precipitation, and runoff, usually
reaching the sea. Evaporation and transpiration contribute to the precipitation
over land. Water used in the production of a good or service is known as virtua

l water.
Safe drinking water is essential to humans and other lifeforms even though it pr
ovides no calories or organic nutrients. Access to safe drinking water has impro
ved over the last decades in almost every part of the world, but approximately o
ne billion people still lack access to safe water and over 2.5 billion lack acce
ss to adequate sanitation.[4] There is a clear correlation between access to saf
e water and gross domestic product per capita.[5] However, some observers have e
stimated that by 2025 more than half of the world population will be facing wate
r-based vulnerability.[6] A report, issued in November 2009, suggests that by 20
30, in some developing regions of the world, water demand will exceed supply by
50%.[7] Water plays an important role in the world economy, as it functions as a
solvent for a wide variety of chemical substances and facilitates industrial co
oling and transportation. Approximately 70% of the freshwater used by humans goe
s to agriculture.[8]

Contents [hide]
1 Chemical and physical properties
2 Taste and odor
3 Distribution in nature 3.1 In the universe 3.1.1 Water vapor
3.1.2 Liquid water
3.1.3 Water ice
3.1.4 Exotic forms
3.2 Water and habitable zone
4 On Earth 4.1 Water cycle
4.2 Fresh water storage
4.3 Sea water and tides
5 Effects on life 5.1 Aquatic life forms
6 Effects on human civilization 6.1 Health and pollution
6.2 Human uses 6.2.1 Agriculture
6.2.2 As a scientific standard
6.2.3 For drinking
6.2.4 Washing
6.2.5 Transportation
6.2.6 Chemical uses
6.2.7 Heat exchange
6.2.8 Fire extinction
6.2.9 Recreation
6.2.10 Water industry
6.2.11 Industrial applications
6.2.12 Food processing
7 Law, politics, and crisis
8 In culture 8.1 Religion
8.2 Philosophy
9 See also 9.1 Other topics
10 References
11 Further reading
12 External links

Chemical and physical properties


Main articles: Properties of water, Water (data page) and Water model

Model of hydrogen bonds (1) between molecules of water.

Impact from a water drop causes an upward "rebound" jet surrounded by circular
capillary waves.

Snowflakes by Wilson Bentley, 1902.

Dew drops adhering to a spider web.

Capillary action of water compared to mercury.


Water is the chemical substance with chemical formula H
2O: one molecule of water has two hydrogen atoms covalently bonded to a single
oxygen atom.
Water appears in nature in all three common states of matter (solid, liquid, and
gas) and may take many different forms on Earth: water vapor and clouds in the
sky, seawater in the oceans, icebergs in the polar oceans, glaciers in the mount
ains, fresh and salt water lakes, rivers, and aquifers in the ground.
The major chemical and physical properties of water are:
Water is a liquid at standard temperature and pressure. It is tasteless and odor
less. The intrinsic color of water and ice is a very slight blue hue, although b
oth appear colorless in small quantities. Water vapour is essentially invisible
as a gas.[9]
Water is transparent in the visible electromagnetic spectrum. Thus aquatic plant
s can live in water because sunlight can reach them. Infrared light is strongly
absorbed by the hydrogen-oxygen or OH bonds.
Since the water molecule is not linear and the oxygen atom has a higher electron
egativity than hydrogen atoms, the oxygen atom carries a slight negative charge,
whereas the hydrogen atoms are slightly positive. As a result, water is a polar
molecule with an electrical dipole moment. Water also can form an unusually lar
ge number of intermolecular hydrogen bonds (four) for a molecule of its size. Th
ese factors lead to strong attractive forces between molecules of water, giving
rise to water's high surface tension[10] and capillary forces. The capillary act
ion refers to the tendency of water to move up a narrow tube against the force o
f gravity. This property is relied upon by all vascular plants, such as trees.[1
1]
Water is a good polar solvent and is often referred to as the universal solvent.
Substances that dissolve in water, e.g., salts, sugars, acids, alkalis, and som
especially oxygen and carbon dioxide (carbonation) are known as hydrophi
e gases

lic (water-loving) substances, while those that are immiscible with water (e.g.,
fats and oils), are known as hydrophobic (water-fearing) substances.
All of the components in cells (proteins, DNA and polysaccharides) are dissolved
in water, deriving their structure and activity from their interactions with th
e water.
Pure water has a low electrical conductivity, but this increases with the dissol
ution of a small amount of ionic material such as sodium chloride.
The boiling point of water (and all other liquids) is dependent on the barometri
c pressure. For example, on the top of Mount Everest water boils at 68 C (154 F),
compared to 100 C (212 F) at sea level at a similar latitude (since latitude modif
ies atmospheric pressure slightly). Conversely, water deep in the ocean near geo
thermal vents can reach temperatures of hundreds of degrees and remain liquid.
At 4181.3 J/(kgK), water has a high specific heat capacity, as well as a high hea
t of vaporization (40.65 kJmol-1), both of which are a result of the extensive hy
drogen bonding between its molecules. These two unusual properties allow water t
o moderate Earth's climate by buffering large fluctuations in temperature.
The density of liquid water is 1,000 kg/m3 (62.43 lb/cu ft) at 4 C. Ice has a den
sity of 917 kg/m3 (57.25 lb/cu ft).

ADR label for transporting goods dangerously reactive with waterThe maximum dens
ity of water occurs at 3.98 C (39.16 F).[12] Most known pure substances become mor
e dense as they cool, however water has the anomalous property of becoming less
dense when it is cooled to its solid form, ice. During cooling water becomes mor
e dense until reaching 3.98 C. Below this temperature, the open structure of ice
is gradually formed in the low temperature water; the random orientations of the
water molecules in the liquid are maintained by the thermal motion, and below 3
.98 C there is not enough thermal energy to maintain this randomness. As water is
cooled there are two competing effects: 1) decreasing volume, and 2) increase o
verall volume of the liquid as the molecules begin to orient into the organized
structure of ice. Between 3.98 C and 0 C, the second effect will cancel the first
effect so the net effect is an increase of volume with decreasing temperature.[1
3] Water expands to occupy a 9% greater volume as ice, which accounts for the fa
ct that ice floats on liquid water, as in icebergs.
Water is miscible with many liquids, such as ethanol, in all proportions, formin
g a single homogeneous liquid. On the other hand, water and most oils are immisc
ible, usually forming layers with the least dense liquid as the top layer, and t
he most dense layer at the bottom.
Water forms an azeotrope with many other solvents.
Water can be split by electrolysis into hydrogen and oxygen. The energy required
to split water into hydrogen and oxygen by electrolysis or any other means is g
reater than the energy that can be collected when the hydrogen and oxygen recomb
ine.[14]
As an oxide of hydrogen, water is formed when hydrogen or hydrogen-containing co
mpounds burn or react with oxygen or oxygen-containing compounds. Water is not a
fuel, it is an end-product of the combustion of hydrogen.
Elements which are more electropositive than hydrogen such as lithium, sodium, c
alcium, potassium and caesium displace hydrogen from water, forming hydroxides.
Being a flammable gas, the hydrogen given off is dangerous and the reaction of w
ater with the more electropositive of these elements may be violently explosive.
Property
Remarks
Importance to the environment

Physical state Only substance occurring naturally in all three phases as solid,
liquid, and gas on Earth's surface Transfer of heat between ocean and atmosphere
by phase change
Dissolving ability Dissolves more substances in greater quantities than any othe
r common liquid Important in chemical, physical, and biological processes
Density: mass per unit volume Density is determined by (1) temperature, (2) sali
nity, and (3) pressure, in that order of importance. The temperature of maximum
density for pure water is 4 C. For seawater, the freezing point decreases with in
creasing salinity Controls oceanic vertical circulation, aids in heat distributi
on, and allows seasonal stratification
Surface tension Highest of all common liquids Controls drop formation in rain an
d clouds; important in cell physiology
Conduction of heat Highest of all common liquids Important on the small scale, e
specially on cellular level
Heat capacity Highest of all common solids and liquids Prevents extreme range in
Earth's temperatures (i.e., great heat moderator)
Latent heat of fusion Highest of all common liquids and most solids Thermostatic
heat-regulating effect due to the release of heat on freezing and absorption on
melting
Latent heat of vaporization Highest of all common substances Immense importance:
a major factor in the transfer of heat in and between ocean and atmosphere, dri
ving weather and climate
Refractive index Increases with increasing salinity and decreases with increasin
g temperature Objects appear closer than in air
Transparency Relatively great for visible light; absorption high for infrared an
d ultraviolet Important for photosynthesis
Sound transmission Good compared with other fluids Allows for sonar and precisio
n depth recorders to rapidly determine water depth, and to detect subsurface fea
tures and animals; sounds can be heard great distances underwater
Compressibility Only slight Density changes only slightly with pressure/depth
Boiling and melting points Unusually high Allows water to exist as a liquid on m
ost of Earth
Taste and odor
Pure H2O is tasteless and odorless.
Water can dissolve many different substances, giving it varying tastes and odors
. Humans, and other animals, have developed senses that enable them to evaluate
the potability of water by avoiding water that is too salty or putrid.
The taste of spring water and mineral water, often advertised in marketing of co
nsumer products, derives from the minerals dissolved in it. The advertised purit
y of spring and mineral water refers to absence of toxins, pollutants, and micro
bes, not to the absence of naturally occurring minerals.
Distribution in nature
In the universe

Band 5 ALMA receiver is an instrument specifically designed to detect water in


the Universe.[15]
Much of the universe's water is produced as a byproduct of star formation. When
stars are born, their birth is accompanied by a strong outward wind of gas and d
ust. When this outflow of material eventually impacts the surrounding gas, the s

hock waves that are created compress and heat the gas. The water observed is qui
ckly produced in this warm dense gas.[16]
On 22 July 2011 a report described the discovery of a gigantic cloud of water va
por containing "140 trillion times more water than all of Earth's oceans combine
d" around a quasar located 12 billion light years from Earth. According to the r
esearchers, the "discovery shows that water has been prevalent in the universe f
or nearly its entire existence".[17][18]
Water has been detected in interstellar clouds within our galaxy, the Milky Way.
[citation needed] Water probably exists in abundance in other galaxies, too, bec
ause its components, hydrogen and oxygen, are among the most abundant elements i
n the universe. Based on models of the formation and evolution of the Solar Syst
em and that of other star systems, most other planetary systems are likely to ha
ve similar ingredients.
Water vapor
Water is present as vapor in:
Atmosphere of the Sun: in detectable trace amounts[19]
Atmosphere of Mercury: 3.4%, and large amounts of water in Mercury's exosphere[2
0]
Atmosphere of Venus: 0.002%[21]
Earth's atmosphere: ~0.40% over full atmosphere, typically 1 4% at surface; as wel
l as that of the Moon in trace amounts[22]
Atmosphere of Mars: 0.03%[23]
Atmosphere of Ceres[24]
Atmosphere of Jupiter: 0.0004%[25] in ices only; and that of its moon Europa[26]
Atmosphere of Saturn in ices only; and that of its moons Titan (stratospheric),
Enceladus: 91%[27] and Dione (exosphere)
Atmosphere of Uranus - in trace amounts below 50 bar[28]
Atmosphere of Neptune - found in the deeper layers[29]
Extrasolar planet atmospheres: including those of HD 189733 b[30] and HD 209458
b,[31] Tau Botis b,[32] HAT-P-11b,[33][34] XO-1b, WASP-12b, WASP-17b, and WASP-19
b.[35]
Stellar atmospheres: not limited to cooler stars and even detected in giant hot
stars such as Betelgeuse, Mu Cephei, Antares and Arcturus.[34][36]
Circumstellar disks: including those of more than half of T Tauri stars such as
AA Tauri[34] as well as TW Hydrae,[37][38] IRC +10216[39] and APM 08279+5255,[17
][18] VY Canis Majoris and S Persei.[36]
Liquid water

Turquoise water with a bit of Sun.


Liquid water is known to be present on Earth, covering 71% of its surface. Scien
tists believe liquid water is present in the Saturnian moons of Enceladus, as a
10-kilometre thick ocean approximately 30-40 kilometres below Enceladus' south p
olar surface,[40][41] and Titan, as a subsurface layer, possibly mixed with ammo
nia.[42] Jupiter's moon Europa has surface characteristics which suggest a subsu
rface liquid water ocean.[43] Liquid water may also exist on Jupiter's moon Gany
mede as a layer sandwiched between high pressure ice and rock.[44]
Water ice
Water is present as ice on:
Mars: under the regolith and at the poles

Earth-Moon system: mainly as ice sheets on Earth and in Lunar craters and volcan
ic rocks[45] NASA reported the detection of water molecules by NASA's Moon Miner
alogy Mapper aboard the Indian Space Research Organization's Chandrayaan-1 space
craft in September 2009.[46]
Jupiter's moons: Europa's surface and also that of Ganymede
Saturn: in the planet's ring system[47] and on the surface and mantle of Titan a
nd Enceladus
Pluto-Charon system[47]
Comets and related (Kuiper belt and Oort cloud objects).
And may also be present on:
Mercury's poles[48]
Ceres
Tethys
Exotic forms
Water and other volatiles probably comprise much of the internal structures of U
ranus and Neptune and the water in the deeper layers may be in the form of ionic
water in which the molecules break down into a soup of hydrogen and oxygen ions
, and deeper down as superionic water in which the oxygen crystallises but the h
ydrogen ions float around freely within the oxygen lattice.[49]
Water and habitable zone
Further information: Water distribution on Earth
The existence of liquid water, and to a lesser extent its gaseous and solid form
s, on Earth are vital to the existence of life on Earth as we know it. The Earth
is located in the habitable zone of the solar system; if it were slightly close
r to or farther from the Sun (about 5%, or about 8 million kilometers), the cond
itions which allow the three forms to be present simultaneously would be far les
s likely to exist.[50][51]
Earth's gravity allows it to hold an atmosphere. Water vapor and carbon dioxide
in the atmosphere provide a temperature buffer (greenhouse effect) which helps m
aintain a relatively steady surface temperature. If Earth were smaller, a thinne
r atmosphere would allow temperature extremes, thus preventing the accumulation
of water except in polar ice caps (as on Mars).
The surface temperature of Earth has been relatively constant through geologic t
ime despite varying levels of incoming solar radiation (insolation), indicating
that a dynamic process governs Earth's temperature via a combination of greenhou
se gases and surface or atmospheric albedo. This proposal is known as the Gaia h
ypothesis.
The state of water on a planet depends on ambient pressure, which is determined
by the planet's gravity. If a planet is sufficiently massive, the water on it ma
y be solid even at high temperatures, because of the high pressure caused by gra
vity, as it was observed on exoplanets Gliese 436 b[52] and GJ 1214 b.[53]
On Earth
Main articles: Hydrology and Water distribution on Earth

Water covers 71% of the Earth's surface; the oceans contain 96.5% of the Earth'

s water. The Antarctic ice sheet, which contains 61% of all fresh water on Earth
, is visible at the bottom. Condensed atmospheric water can be seen as clouds, c
ontributing to the Earth's albedo.
Hydrology is the study of the movement, distribution, and quality of water throu
ghout the Earth. The study of the distribution of water is hydrography. The stud
y of the distribution and movement of groundwater is hydrogeology, of glaciers i
s glaciology, of inland waters is limnology and distribution of oceans is oceano
graphy. Ecological processes with hydrology are in focus of ecohydrology.
The collective mass of water found on, under, and over the surface of a planet i
s called the hydrosphere. Earth's approximate water volume (the total water supp
ly of the world) is 1,338,000,000 km3 (321,000,000 mi3).[2]
Liquid water is found in bodies of water, such as an ocean, sea, lake, river, st
ream, canal, pond, or puddle. The majority of water on Earth is sea water. Water
is also present in the atmosphere in solid, liquid, and vapor states. It also e
xists as groundwater in aquifers.
Water is important in many geological processes. Groundwater is present in most
rocks, and the pressure of this groundwater affects patterns of faulting. Water
in the mantle is responsible for the melt that produces volcanoes at subduction
zones. On the surface of the Earth, water is important in both chemical and phys
ical weathering processes. Water, and to a lesser but still significant extent,
ice, are also responsible for a large amount of sediment transport that occurs o
n the surface of the earth. Deposition of transported sediment forms many types
of sedimentary rocks, which make up the geologic record of Earth history.
Water cycle
Main article: Water cycle

Water cycle
The water cycle (known scientifically as the hydrologic cycle) refers to the con
tinuous exchange of water within the hydrosphere, between the atmosphere, soil w
ater, surface water, groundwater, and plants.
Water moves perpetually through each of these regions in the water cycle consist
ing of following transfer processes:
evaporation from oceans and other water bodies into the air and transpiration fr
om land plants and animals into air.
precipitation, from water vapor condensing from the air and falling to earth or
ocean.
runoff from the land usually reaching the sea.
Most water vapor over the oceans returns to the oceans, but winds carry water va
por over land at the same rate as runoff into the sea, about 47 Tt per year. Ove
r land, evaporation and transpiration contribute another 72 Tt per year. Precipi
tation, at a rate of 119 Tt per year over land, has several forms: most commonly
rain, snow, and hail, with some contribution from fog and dew.[54] Dew is small
drops of water that are condensed when a high density of water vapor meets a co
ol surface. Dew usually forms in the morning when the temperature is the lowest,
just before sunrise and when the temperature of the earth's surface starts to i
ncrease.[55] Condensed water in the air may also refract sunlight to produce rai
nbows.
Water runoff often collects over watersheds flowing into rivers. A mathematical

model used to simulate river or stream flow and calculate water quality paramete
rs is a hydrological transport model. Some water is diverted to irrigation for a
griculture. Rivers and seas offer opportunity for travel and commerce. Through e
rosion, runoff shapes the environment creating river valleys and deltas which pr
ovide rich soil and level ground for the establishment of population centers. A
flood occurs when an area of land, usually low-lying, is covered with water. It
is when a river overflows its banks or flood comes from the sea. A drought is an
extended period of months or years when a region notes a deficiency in its wate
r supply. This occurs when a region receives consistently below average precipit
ation.
Fresh water storage

Bay of Fundy High Tide.jpgBay of Fundy Low Tide.jpg


The Bay of Fundy at high tide (left) and low tide (right)
Main article: Water resources
Some runoff water is trapped for periods of time, for example in lakes. At high
altitude, during winter, and in the far north and south, snow collects in ice ca
ps, snow pack and glaciers. Water also infiltrates the ground and goes into aqui
fers. This groundwater later flows back to the surface in springs, or more spect
acularly in hot springs and geysers. Groundwater is also extracted artificially
in wells. This water storage is important, since clean, fresh water is essential
to human and other land-based life. In many parts of the world, it is in short
supply.
Sea water and tides
Main articles: Seawater and Tides
Sea water contains about 3.5% salt on average, plus smaller amounts of other sub
stances. The physical properties of sea water differ from fresh water in some im
portant respects. It freezes at a lower temperature (about -1.9 C) and its densit
y increases with decreasing temperature to the freezing point, instead of reachi
ng maximum density at a temperature above freezing. The salinity of water in maj
or seas varies from about 0.7% in the Baltic Sea to 4.0% in the Red Sea.
Tides are the cyclic rising and falling of local sea levels caused by the tidal
forces of the Moon and the Sun acting on the oceans. Tides cause changes in the
depth of the marine and estuarine water bodies and produce oscillating currents
known as tidal streams. The changing tide produced at a given location is the re
sult of the changing positions of the Moon and Sun relative to the Earth coupled
with the effects of Earth rotation and the local bathymetry. The strip of seash
ore that is submerged at high tide and exposed at low tide, the intertidal zone,
is an important ecological product of ocean tides.
Effects on life

An oasis is an isolated water source with vegetation in a desert.

Overview of photosynthesis and respiration. Water (at right), together with car
bon dioxide (CO2), form oxygen and organic compounds (at left), which can be res
pired to water and (CO2).
From a biological standpoint, water has many distinct properties that are critic
al for the proliferation of life. It carries out this role by allowing organic c
ompounds to react in ways that ultimately allow replication. All known forms of
life depend on water. Water is vital both as a solvent in which many of the body
's solutes dissolve and as an essential part of many metabolic processes within
the body. Metabolism is the sum total of anabolism and catabolism. In anabolism,
water is removed from molecules (through energy requiring enzymatic chemical re
actions) in order to grow larger molecules (e.g. starches, triglycerides and pro
teins for storage of fuels and information). In catabolism, water is used to bre
ak bonds in order to generate smaller molecules (e.g. glucose, fatty acids and a
mino acids to be used for fuels for energy use or other purposes). Without water
, these particular metabolic processes could not exist.
Water is fundamental to photosynthesis and respiration. Photosynthetic cells use
the sun's energy to split off water's hydrogen from oxygen. Hydrogen is combine
d with CO2 (absorbed from air or water) to form glucose and release oxygen. All
living cells use such fuels and oxidize the hydrogen and carbon to capture the s
un's energy and reform water and CO2 in the process (cellular respiration).
Water is also central to acid-base neutrality and enzyme function. An acid, a hy
drogen ion (H+, that is, a proton) donor, can be neutralized by a base, a proton
acceptor such as a hydroxide ion (OH-) to form water. Water is considered to be
neutral, with a pH (the negative log of the hydrogen ion concentration) of 7. A
cids have pH values less than 7 while bases have values greater than 7.
Aquatic life forms
Main articles: Hydrobiology and Aquatic plant

Some of the biodiversity of a coral reef

Some marine diatoms


a key phytoplankton group
Earth surface waters are filled with life. The earliest life forms appeared in w
ater; nearly all fish live exclusively in water, and there are many types of mar
ine mammals, such as dolphins and whales. Some kinds of animals, such as amphibi
ans, spend portions of their lives in water and portions on land. Plants such as
kelp and algae grow in the water and are the basis for some underwater ecosyste
ms. Plankton is generally the foundation of the ocean food chain.
Aquatic vertebrates must obtain oxygen to survive, and they do so in various way
s. Fish have gills instead of lungs, although some species of fish, such as the
lungfish, have both. Marine mammals, such as dolphins, whales, otters, and seals
need to surface periodically to breathe air. Some amphibians are able to absorb
oxygen through their skin. Invertebrates exhibit a wide range of modifications
to survive in poorly oxygenated waters including breathing tubes (see insect and
mollusc siphons) and gills (Carcinus). However as invertebrate life evolved in
an aquatic habitat most have little or no specialisation for respiration in wate
r.

Effects on human civilization

Water fountain
Civilization has historically flourished around rivers and major waterways; Meso
potamia, the so-called cradle of civilization, was situated between the major ri
vers Tigris and Euphrates; the ancient society of the Egyptians depended entirel
y upon the Nile. Large metropolises like Rotterdam, London, Montreal, Paris, New
York City, Buenos Aires, Shanghai, Tokyo, Chicago, and Hong Kong owe their succ
ess in part to their easy accessibility via water and the resultant expansion of
trade. Islands with safe water ports, like Singapore, have flourished for the s
ame reason. In places such as North Africa and the Middle East, where water is m
ore scarce, access to clean drinking water was and is a major factor in human de
velopment.
Health and pollution

An environmental science program - a student from Iowa State University samplin


g water
Water fit for human consumption is called drinking water or potable water. Water
that is not potable may be made potable by filtration or distillation, or by a
range of other methods.
Water that is not fit for drinking but is not harmful for humans when used for s
wimming or bathing is called by various names other than potable or drinking wat
er, and is sometimes called safe water, or "safe for bathing". Chlorine is a ski
n and mucous membrane irritant that is used to make water safe for bathing or dr
inking. Its use is highly technical and is usually monitored by government regul
ations (typically 1 part per million (ppm) for drinking water, and 1 2 ppm of chlo
rine not yet reacted with impurities for bathing water). Water for bathing may b
e maintained in satisfactory microbiological condition using chemical disinfecta
nts such as chlorine or ozone or by the use of ultraviolet light.
In the USA, non-potable forms of wastewater generated by humans may be referred
to as greywater, which is treatable and thus easily able to be made potable agai
n, and blackwater, which generally contains sewage and other forms of waste whic
h require further treatment in order to be made reusable. Greywater composes 50 80
% of residential wastewater generated by a household's sanitation equipment (sin
ks, showers and kitchen runoff, but not toilets, which generate blackwater.) The
se terms may have different meanings in other countries and cultures.
This natural resource is becoming scarcer in certain places, and its availabilit
y is a major social and economic concern. Currently, about a billion people arou
nd the world routinely drink unhealthy water. Most countries accepted the goal o
f halving by 2015 the number of people worldwide who do not have access to safe
water and sanitation during the 2003 G8 Evian summit.[56] Even if this difficult
goal is met, it will still leave more than an estimated half a billion people w
ithout access to safe drinking water and over a billion without access to adequa
te sanitation. Poor water quality and bad sanitation are deadly; some five milli
on deaths a year are caused by polluted drinking water. The World Health Organiz
ation estimates that safe water could prevent 1.4 million child deaths from diar
rhea each year.[57]

Water, however, is not a finite resource, but rather re-circulated as potable wa


ter in precipitation in quantities many degrees of magnitude higher than human c
onsumption. Therefore, it is the relatively small quantity of water in reserve i
n the earth (about 1% of our drinking water supply, which is replenished in aqui
fers around every 1 to 10 years), that is a non-renewable resource, and it is, r
ather, the distribution of potable and irrigation water which is scarce, rather
than the actual amount of it that exists on the earth. Water-poor countries use
importation of goods as the primary method of importing water (to leave enough f
or local human consumption), since the manufacturing process uses around 10 to 1
00 times products' masses in water.
In the developing world, 90% of all wastewater still goes untreated into local r
ivers and streams.[58] Some 50 countries, with roughly a third of the world's po
pulation, also suffer from medium or high water stress, and 17 of these extract
more water annually than is recharged through their natural water cycles.[59] Th
e strain not only affects surface freshwater bodies like rivers and lakes, but i
t also degrades groundwater resources.
Human uses
Further information: Water supply
Agriculture

File:Subsurface drip emission on loamy soil.ogv


Play media

Water distribution in subsurface drip irrigation

Irrigation of field crops


The most important use of water in agriculture is for irrigation, which is a key
component to produce enough food. Irrigation takes up to 90% of water withdrawn
in some developing countries[60] and significant proportions in more economical
ly developed countries (in the United States, 30% of freshwater usage is for irr
igation).[61]
Fifty years ago, the common perception was that water was an infinite resource.
At this time, there were fewer than half the current number of people on the pla
net. People were not as wealthy as today, consumed fewer calories and ate less m
eat, so less water was needed to produce their food. They required a third of th
e volume of water we presently take from rivers. Today, the competition for the
fixed amount of water resources is much more intense, giving rise to the concept
of peak water.[62] This is because there are now nearly seven billion people on
the planet, their consumption of water-thirsty meat and vegetables is rising, a
nd there is increasing competition for water from industry, urbanisation and bio
fuel crops. In future, even more water will be needed to produce food because th
e Earth's population is forecast to rise to 9 billion by 2050.[63]
An assessment of water management in agriculture was conducted in 2007 by the In
ternational Water Management Institute in Sri Lanka to see if the world had suff
icient water to provide food for its growing population.[64] It assessed the cur
rent availability of water for agriculture on a global scale and mapped out loca
tions suffering from water scarcity. It found that a fifth of the world's people

, more than 1.2 billion, live in areas of physical water scarcity, where there i
s not enough water to meet all demands. A further 1.6 billion people live in are
as experiencing economic water scarcity, where the lack of investment in water o
r insufficient human capacity make it impossible for authorities to satisfy the
demand for water. The report found that it would be possible to produce the food
required in future, but that continuation of today's food production and enviro
nmental trends would lead to crises in many parts of the world. To avoid a globa
l water crisis, farmers will have to strive to increase productivity to meet gro
wing demands for food, while industry and cities find ways to use water more eff
iciently.[65]
As a scientific standard
On 7 April 1795, the gram was defined in France to be equal to "the absolute wei
ght of a volume of pure water equal to a cube of one hundredth of a meter, and a
t the temperature of melting ice."[66] For practical purposes though, a metallic
reference standard was required, one thousand times more massive, the kilogram.
Work was therefore commissioned to determine precisely the mass of one liter of
water. In spite of the fact that the decreed definition of the gram specified w
ater at 0 C
a highly reproducible temperature
the scientists chose to redefine th
e standard and to perform their measurements at the temperature of highest water
density, which was measured at the time as 4 C (39 F).[67]
The Kelvin temperature scale of the SI system is based on the triple point of wa
ter, defined as exactly 273.16 K or 0.01 C. The scale is an absolute temperature
scale with the same increment as the Celsius temperature scale, which was origin
ally defined according the boiling point (set to 100 C) and melting point (set to
0 C) of water.
Natural water consists mainly of the isotopes hydrogen-1 and oxygen-16, but ther
e is also a small quantity of heavier isotopes such as hydrogen-2 (deuterium). T
he amount of deuterium oxides or heavy water is very small, but it still affects
the properties of water. Water from rivers and lakes tends to contain less deut
erium than seawater. Therefore, standard water is defined in the Vienna Standard
Mean Ocean Water specification.
For drinking
Main article: Drinking water

A young girl drinking bottled water

Water availability: fraction of population using improved water sources by coun


try
The human body contains from 55% to 78% water, depending on body size.[68] To fu
nction properly, the body requires between one and seven liters of water per day
to avoid dehydration; the precise amount depends on the level of activity, temp
erature, humidity, and other factors. Most of this is ingested through foods or
beverages other than drinking straight water. It is not clear how much water int
ake is needed by healthy people, though most specialists agree that approximatel
y 2 liters (6 to 7 glasses) of water daily is the minimum to maintain proper hyd
ration.[69] Medical literature favors a lower consumption, typically 1 liter of
water for an average male, excluding extra requirements due to fluid loss from e

xercise or warm weather.[70]


For those who have healthy kidneys, it is rather difficult to drink too much wat
er, but (especially in warm humid weather and while exercising) it is dangerous
to drink too little. People can drink far more water than necessary while exerci
sing, however, putting them at risk of water intoxication (hyperhydration), whic
h can be fatal.[71][72] The popular claim that "a person should consume eight gl
asses of water per day" seems to have no real basis in science.[73] Studies have
shown that extra water intake, especially up to 500 ml at mealtime was conduciv
e to weight loss.[74][75][76][77][78][79] Adequate fluid intake is helpful in pr
eventing constipation.[80]

Hazard symbol for non-potable water


An original recommendation for water intake in 1945 by the Food and Nutrition Bo
ard of the United States National Research Council read: "An ordinary standard f
or diverse persons is 1 milliliter for each calorie of food. Most of this quanti
ty is contained in prepared foods."[81] The latest dietary reference intake repo
rt by the United States National Research Council in general recommended (includ
ing food sources): 3.7 liters for men and 2.7 liters of water total for women.[8
2]
Specifically, pregnant and breastfeeding women need additional fluids to stay hy
drated. The Institute of Medicine (U.S.) recommends that, on average, men consum
e 3.0 liters and women 2.2 liters; pregnant women should increase intake to 2.4
liters (10 cups) and breastfeeding women should get 3 liters (12 cups), since an
especially large amount of fluid is lost during nursing.[83] Also noted is that
normally, about 20% of water intake comes from food, while the rest comes from
drinking water and beverages (caffeinated included). Water is excreted from the
body in multiple forms; through urine and feces, through sweating, and by exhala
tion of water vapor in the breath. With physical exertion and heat exposure, wat
er loss will increase and daily fluid needs may increase as well.
Humans require water with few impurities. Common impurities include metal salts
and oxides, including copper, iron, calcium and lead,[84] and/or harmful bacteri
a, such as Vibrio. Some solutes are acceptable and even desirable for taste enha
ncement and to provide needed electrolytes.[85]
The single largest (by volume) freshwater resource suitable for drinking is Lake
Baikal in Siberia.[86]
Washing
The propensity of water to form solutions and emulsions is useful in various was
hing processes. Many industrial processes rely on reactions using chemicals diss
olved in water, suspension of solids in water slurries or using water to dissolv
e and extract substances. Washing is also an important component of several aspe
cts of personal body hygiene.
Transportation
Main article: Ship transport
The use of water for transportation of materials through rivers and canals as we
ll as the international shipping lanes is an important part of the world economy
.

Chemical uses
Water is widely used in chemical reactions as a solvent or reactant and less com
monly as a solute or catalyst. In inorganic reactions, water is a common solvent
, dissolving many ionic compounds. In organic reactions, it is not usually used
as a reaction solvent, because it does not dissolve the reactants well and is am
photeric (acidic and basic) and nucleophilic. Nevertheless, these properties are
sometimes desirable. Also, acceleration of Diels-Alder reactions by water has b
een observed. Supercritical water has recently been a topic of research. Oxygensaturated supercritical water combusts organic pollutants efficiently.
Heat exchange
Water and steam are a common fluid used for heat exchange, due to its availabili
ty and high heat capacity, both for cooling and heating. Cool water may even be
naturally available from a lake or the sea. It's especially effective to transpo
rt heat through vaporization and condensation of water because of its large late
nt heat of vaporization. A disadvantage is that metals commonly found in industr
ies such as steel and copper are oxidized faster by untreated water and steam. I
n almost all thermal power stations, water is used as the working fluid (used in
a closed loop between boiler, steam turbine and condenser), and the coolant (us
ed to exchange the waste heat to a water body or carry it away by evaporation in
a cooling tower). In the United States, cooling power plants is the largest use
of water.[61]
In the nuclear power industry, water can also be used as a neutron moderator. In
most nuclear reactors, water is both a coolant and a moderator. This provides s
omething of a passive safety measure, as removing the water from the reactor als
o slows the nuclear reaction down. However other methods are favored for stoppin
g a reaction and it is preferred to keep the nuclear core covered with water so
as to ensure adequate cooling.
Fire extinction

Water is used for fighting wildfires.


Water has a high heat of vaporization and is relatively inert, which makes it a
good fire extinguishing fluid. The evaporation of water carries heat away from t
he fire. It is dangerous to use water on fires involving oils and organic solven
ts, because many organic materials float on water and the water tends to spread
the burning liquid.
Use of water in fire fighting should also take into account the hazards of a ste
am explosion, which may occur when water is used on very hot fires in confined s
paces, and of a hydrogen explosion, when substances which react with water, such
as certain metals or hot carbon such as coal, charcoal, or coke graphite, decom
pose the water, producing water gas.
The power of such explosions was seen in the Chernobyl disaster, although the wa
ter involved did not come from fire-fighting at that time but the reactor's own
water cooling system. A steam explosion occurred when the extreme overheating of
the core caused water to flash into steam. A hydrogen explosion may have occurr
ed as a result of reaction between steam and hot zirconium.
Recreation

Grand Anse Beach, St. George's, Grenada, West Indies


Main article: Water sport (recreation)
Humans use water for many recreational purposes, as well as for exercising and f
or sports. Some of these include swimming, waterskiing, boating, surfing and div
ing. In addition, some sports, like ice hockey and ice skating, are played on ic
e. Lakesides, beaches and water parks are popular places for people to go to rel
ax and enjoy recreation. Many find the sound and appearance of flowing water to
be calming, and fountains and other water features are popular decorations. Some
keep fish and other life in aquariums or ponds for show, fun, and companionship
. Humans also use water for snow sports i.e. skiing, sledding, snowmobiling or s
nowboarding, which require the water to be frozen.
Water industry

A water-carrier in India, 1882. In many places where running water is not avail
able, water has to be transported by people.

A manual water pump in China

Water purification facility


The water industry provides drinking water and wastewater services (including se
wage treatment) to households and industry. Water supply facilities include wate
r wells, cisterns for rainwater harvesting, water supply networks, and water pur
ification facilities, water tanks, water towers, water pipes including old aqued
ucts. Atmospheric water generators are in development.
Drinking water is often collected at springs, extracted from artificial borings
(wells) in the ground, or pumped from lakes and rivers. Building more wells in a
dequate places is thus a possible way to produce more water, assuming the aquife
rs can supply an adequate flow. Other water sources include rainwater collection
. Water may require purification for human consumption. This may involve removal
of undissolved substances, dissolved substances and harmful microbes. Popular m
ethods are filtering with sand which only removes undissolved material, while ch
lorination and boiling kill harmful microbes. Distillation does all three functi
ons. More advanced techniques exist, such as reverse osmosis. Desalination of ab
undant seawater is a more expensive solution used in coastal arid climates.
The distribution of drinking water is done through municipal water systems, tank
er delivery or as bottled water. Governments in many countries have programs to
distribute water to the needy at no charge.
Reducing usage by using drinking (potable) water only for human consumption is a
nother option. In some cities such as Hong Kong, sea water is extensively used f
or flushing toilets citywide in order to conserve fresh water resources.
Polluting water may be the biggest single misuse of water; to the extent that a

pollutant limits other uses of the water, it becomes a waste of the resource, re
gardless of benefits to the polluter. Like other types of pollution, this does n
ot enter standard accounting of market costs, being conceived as externalities f
or which the market cannot account. Thus other people pay the price of water pol
lution, while the private firms' profits are not redistributed to the local popu
lation, victims of this pollution. Pharmaceuticals consumed by humans often end
up in the waterways and can have detrimental effects on aquatic life if they bio
accumulate and if they are not biodegradable.
Wastewater facilities are storm sewers and wastewater treatment plants. Another
way to remove pollution from surface runoff water is bioswale.
Industrial applications
Water is used in power generation. Hydroelectricity is electricity obtained from
hydropower. Hydroelectric power comes from water driving a water turbine connec
ted to a generator. Hydroelectricity is a low-cost, non-polluting, renewable ene
rgy source. The energy is supplied by the motion of water. Typically a dam is co
nstructed on a river, creating an artificial lake behind it. Water flowing out o
f the lake is forced through turbines that turn generators.

Three Gorges Dam is the largest hydro-electric power station.


Pressurized water is used in water blasting and water jet cutters. Also, very hi
gh pressure water guns are used for precise cutting. It works very well, is rela
tively safe, and is not harmful to the environment. It is also used in the cooli
ng of machinery to prevent overheating, or prevent saw blades from overheating.
Water is also used in many industrial processes and machines, such as the steam
turbine and heat exchanger, in addition to its use as a chemical solvent. Discha
rge of untreated water from industrial uses is pollution. Pollution includes dis
charged solutes (chemical pollution) and discharged coolant water (thermal pollu
tion). Industry requires pure water for many applications and utilizes a variety
of purification techniques both in water supply and discharge.
Food processing

Water can be used to cook foods such as noodles.


Boiling, steaming, and simmering are popular cooking methods that often require
immersing food in water or its gaseous state, steam. Water is also used for dish
washing. Water also plays many critical roles within the field of food science.
It is important for a food scientist to understand the roles that water plays wi
thin food processing to ensure the success of their products.[citation needed]
Solutes such as salts and sugars found in water affect the physical properties o
f water. The boiling and freezing points of water are affected by solutes, as we
ll as air pressure, which is in turn is affected by altitude. Water boils at low
er temperatures with the lower air pressure that occurs at higher elevations. On
e mole of sucrose (sugar) per kilogram of water raises the boiling point of wate
r by 0.51 C (0.918 F), and one mole of salt per kg raises the boiling point by 1.0
2 C (1.836 F); similarly, increasing the number of dissolved particles lowers wate

r's freezing point.[87]


Solutes in water also affect water activity that affects many chemical reactions
and the growth of microbes in food.[88] Water activity can be described as a ra
tio of the vapor pressure of water in a solution to the vapor pressure of pure w
ater.[87] Solutes in water lower water activity this is important to know because
most bacterial growth ceases at low levels of water activity.[88] Not only does
microbial growth affect the safety of food, but also the preservation and shelf
life of food.
Water hardness is also a critical factor in food processing and may be altered o
r treated by using a chemical ion exchange system. It can dramatically affect th
e quality of a product, as well as playing a role in sanitation. Water hardness
is classified based on concentration of calcium carbonate the water contains. Wa
ter is classified as soft if it contains less than 100 mg/l (UK)[89] or less tha
n 60 mg/l (USA).[90]
According to a report published by the Water Footprint organization in 2010, a s
ingle kilogram of beef requires 15 thousand litres of water; however, the author
s also make clear that this is a global average and circumstantial factors deter
mine the amount of water used in beef production.[91]
Law, politics, and crisis
Main articles: Water law, Water right and Water crisis

An estimate of the share of people in developing countries with access to potab


le water 1970 2000
Water politics is politics affected by water and water resources. For this reaso
n, water is a strategic resource in the globe and an important element in many p
olitical conflicts. It causes health impacts and damage to biodiversity.
1.6 billion people have gained access to a safe water source since 1990.[92] The
proportion of people in developing countries with access to safe water is calcu
lated to have improved from 30% in 1970[93] to 71% in 1990, 79% in 2000 and 84%
in 2004. This trend is projected to continue.[4] To halve, by 2015, the proporti
on of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water is one of the Mil
lennium Development Goals. This goal is projected to be reached.
A 2006 United Nations report stated that "there is enough water for everyone", b
ut that access to it is hampered by mismanagement and corruption.[94] In additio
n, global initiatives to improve the efficiency of aid delivery, such as the Par
is Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, have not been taken up by water sector dono
rs as effectively as they have in education and health, potentially leaving mult
iple donors working on overlapping projects and recipient governments without em
powerment to act.[95]
The authors of the 2007 Comprehensive Assessment of Water Management in Agricult
ure cited poor governance as one reason for some forms of water scarcity. Water
governance is the set of formal and informal processes through which decisions r
elated to water management are made. Good water governance is primarily about kn
owing what processes work best in a particular physical and socioeconomic contex
t. Mistakes have sometimes been made by trying to apply 'blueprints' that work i
n the developed world to developing world locations and contexts. The Mekong riv
er is one example; a review by the International Water Management Institute of p
olicies in six countries that rely on the Mekong river for water found that thor

ough and transparent cost-benefit analyses and environmental impact assessments


were rarely undertaken. They also discovered that Cambodia's draft water law was
much more complex than it needed to be.[96]
The UN World Water Development Report (WWDR, 2003) from the World Water Assessme
nt Program indicates that, in the next 20 years, the quantity of water available
to everyone is predicted to decrease by 30%. 40% of the world's inhabitants cur
rently have insufficient fresh water for minimal hygiene. More than 2.2 million
people died in 2000 from waterborne diseases (related to the consumption of cont
aminated water) or drought. In 2004, the UK charity WaterAid reported that a chi
ld dies every 15 seconds from easily preventable water-related diseases; often t
his means lack of sewage disposal; see toilet.
Organizations concerned with water protection include the International Water As
sociation (IWA), WaterAid, Water 1st, and the American Water Resources Associati
on. The International Water Management Institute undertakes projects with the ai
m of using effective water management to reduce poverty. Water related conventio
ns are United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), Internationa
l Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, United Nations Conventi
on on the Law of the Sea and Ramsar Convention. World Day for Water takes place
on 22 March and World Ocean Day on 8 June.
In culture
Religion
Main article: Water and religion
Water is considered a purifier in most religions. Faiths that incorporate ritual
washing (ablution) include Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, the Rastafar
i movement, Shinto, Taoism, and Wicca. Immersion (or aspersion or affusion) of a
person in water is a central sacrament of Christianity (where it is called bapt
ism); it is also a part of the practice of other religions, including Islam (Ghu
sl), Judaism (mikvah) and Sikhism (Amrit Sanskar). In addition, a ritual bath in
pure water is performed for the dead in many religions including Islam and Juda
ism. In Islam, the five daily prayers can be done in most cases after completing
washing certain parts of the body using clean water (wudu), unless water is una
vailable (see Tayammum). In Shinto, water is used in almost all rituals to clean
se a person or an area (e.g., in the ritual of misogi).
Philosophy
The Ancient Greek philosopher Empedocles held that water is one of the four clas
sical elements along with fire, earth and air, and was regarded as the ylem, or
basic substance of the universe. Thales, who was portrayed by Aristotle as an as
tronomer and an engineer, theorized that the earth, which is denser than water,
emerged from the water. Thales, a monist, believed further that all things are m
ade from water. Plato believed the shape of water is an icosahedron which accoun
ts for why it is able to flow easily compared to the cube-shaped earth.[97]
In the theory of the four bodily humors, water was associated with phlegm, as be
ing cold and moist. The classical element of water was also one of the five elem
ents in traditional Chinese philosophy, along with earth, fire, wood, and metal.
Water is also taken as a role model in some parts of traditional and popular Asi
an philosophy. James Legge's 1891 translation of the Dao De Jing states "The hig
hest excellence is like (that of) water. The excellence of water appears in its
benefiting all things, and in its occupying, without striving (to the contrary),
the low place which all men dislike. Hence (its way) is near to (that of) the T
ao" and "There is nothing in the world more soft and weak than water, and yet fo

r attacking things that are firm and strong there is nothing that can take prece
dence of it for there is nothing (so effectual) for which it can be changed."[98]
Guanzi in "Shui di" ?? chapter further elaborates on symbolism of water, proclai
ming that "man is water" and attributing natural qualities of the people of diff
erent Chinese regions to the character of local water resources.[99]
See also
Portal icon Water portal
Portal icon Sustainable development portal
Main article: Outline of water
The water (data page) is a collection of the chemical and physical properties of
water.
Water is described in many terms and contexts:

Liquid water and ice structuresaccording to state solid


liquid water
gaseous
water vapor
plasma

ice

according to meteorology: hydrometeor precipitation

precipitation according to movement


vertical (falling) precipitation rain
freezing rain
drizzle
freezing drizzle
snow
snow pellets
snow grains
ice pellets
hail
ice crystals
horizontal (seated) precipitation dew
hoarfrost
atmospheric icing
glaze ice
liquid precipitation rain
freezing rain
drizzle
freezing drizzle
dew
solid precipitation snow
snow pellets
snow grains
ice pellets
hail
ice crystals

precipitation according to state

hoarfrost
atmospheric icing
glaze ice
mixed precipitation in temperatures around 0 C
levitating particles clouds
fog
mist
ascending particles (drifted by wind) spindrift
stirred snow
according to occurrence brackish water
brine
connate water
dead water
strange phenomenon which can occur when a layer of fresh or brackish
water rests on top of denser salt water, without the two layers mixing. It is da
ngerous for ship traveling.
fresh water
groundwater
meltwater
meteoric water
mineral water
contains many minerals
seawater
surface water
according to uses bottled water
drinking water or potable water
useful for everyday drinking, without fouling, i
t contains balanced minerals that are not harmful to health (see below)
purified water, laboratory-grade, analytical-grade or reagent-grade water
water
which has been highly purified for specific uses in science or engineering. Ofte
n broadly classified as Type I, Type II, or Type III, this category of water inc
ludes, but is not limited to, the following: deionized water
distilled water
double distilled water
reverse osmosis plant water
tap water
according to other features distilled water, double distilled water, deionized w
ater contains no minerals
hard water
from underground, contains more minerals
heavy water
made from heavy atoms of hydrogen
deuterium. It is in nature in norm
al water in very low concentration. It was used in construction of first nuclear
reactors.
hydrates water bound into other chemical substances
soft water contains fewer minerals
tritiated water
water of crystallization
water incorporated into crystalline structures
according to civil engineering drinking water
stormwater or surface water
wastewater
according to religion holy water

Other topics
Aquaphobia (fear of water)
Dihydrogen monoxide hoax
Drought
Mirage
Mpemba effect
Oral rehydration therapy
Ripple effect
Thirst
Water Pasteurization Indicator
Water pinch analysis
Willard Water
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Further reading
Debenedetti, PG., and HE Stanley, "Supercooled and Glassy Water", Physics Today
56 (6), p. 40 46 (2003). Downloadable PDF (1.9 MB)
Franks, F (Ed), Water, A comprehensive treatise, Plenum Press, New York, 1972 1982
Gleick, PH., (editor), The World's Water: The Biennial Report on Freshwater Reso
urces. Island Press, Washington, D.C. (published every two years, beginning in 1
998.) The World's Water, Island Press
Jones, OA., JN Lester and N Voulvoulis, Pharmaceuticals: a threat to drinking wa
ter? TRENDS in Biotechnology 23(4): 163, 2005
Journal of Contemporary Water Research & Education[dead link]
Postel,S., Last Oasis: Facing Water Scarcity. W.W. Norton and Company, New York.
1992
Reisner,M., Cadillac Desert: The American West and Its Disappearing Water. Pengu
in Books, New York. 1986.
United Nations World Water Development Report. Produced every three years. UN Wo
rld Water Development Report
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