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Water is a chemical substance that is composed of hydrogen and oxygen and is vital for all known forms of life.

In typical usage, water refers only to its liquid form or state, but the substance also has a solid state, ice, and a gaseous state, water vapor or steam. Water covers 71% of the Earth's surface.On Earth, it is found mostly in oceans and other large water bodies, with 1.6% of water below ground in aquifers and 0.001% in Water in three states: liquid, solid the air as vapor, clouds (formed of solid and liquid (ice), and (invisible)water vapor in water particles suspended in air), and precipitation. Oceans hold 97% of surface water, glaciers and the air. Clouds are the accumulations polar ice caps 2.4%, and other land surface water of the droplets, condensed from such as rivers, lakes andponds 0.6%. A very small amount of the Earth's water is contained within vapor-saturated air. biological bodies and manufactured products. Clean drinking water is essential to human and other lifeforms. Access to safe drinking water has improved steadily and substantially over the last decades in almost every part of the world.There is a clear correlation between access to safe water and GDP per capita.[6] However, some observers have estimated that by 2025 more than half of the world population will be facing water-based vulnerability.A recent report (November 2009) suggests that by 2030, in some developing regions of the world, water demand will exceed supply by 50%.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 cooling and transportation. Approximately 70% of freshwater is consumed by agriculture.

Water is the chemical substance with chemical formula H2O: 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 and may take many different forms on Earth: water vapor and clouds in the sky; seawater and icebergs in the polar oceans; glaciers and rivers in the mountains; and the liquid in aquifers in the ground. The major chemical and physical properties of water are: Water is a tasteless, odorless liquid at standard temperature and pressure. The color of water and ice is, intrinsically, a very slight blue hue, although water appears colorless in small quantities. Ice also appears colorless, and water vapor is essentially invisible as a gas. Water is transparent, and thus aquatic plants can live within the water because sunlight can reach them. Only strong UV light is slightly absorbed. Since the water molecule is not linear and the oxygen atom has a higher electronegativity than hydrogen atoms, it 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. A result of interplay of these properties, Capillary action refers to the tendency of water to move up a narrow tube against the force of gravity. This property is relied upon by all vascular plants, such as trees. Water is a good solvent and is often referred to as the universal solvent. Substances that dissolve in water, e.g., salts, sugars, acids, alkalis, and some gases especially oxygen, carbon dioxide(carbonation) are known as hydrophilic (water-loving) substances, while those that do not mix well with water (e.g., fats and oils), are known as hydrophobic (waterfearing) substances.

Pure water has a low electrical conductivity, but this increases significantly with the dissolution of a small amount of ionic material such as sodium chloride.

Large bodies of water such as oceans manifest water's inherent slightly blue color.

Water in an indoor swimming pool appears blue against a white background, right up to the waterline. The same water inside a floating white bucket appears only very slightly blue.

High concentrations of dissolved lime give the water of Havasu Falls a turquoise color.

Red tide off the Californian coast.

Water is miscible with many liquids, such as ethanol, in all proportions, forming a single homogeneous liquid. On the other hand, water and most oils are immiscible usually forming layers according to increasing density from the top. As a gas, water vapor is completely miscible with air. In chemistry, miscibility is the property of liquids to mix in all proportions

Water can dissolve many different substances, giving it varying tastes and odors. Humans and other animals have developed senses which (more or less) enable them to evaluate the potability of water by avoiding water that is too salty or putrid. Humans also tend to prefer cold water to lukewarm water since cold water is likely to contain fewer microbes. The taste advertised in spring water or mineral water derives from the minerals dissolved in it: Pure H2O is tasteless and odorless. The advertised purity of spring and mineral water refers to absence of toxins, pollutants and microbes.

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 caps, snow pack and glaciers. Water also infiltrates the ground and goes into aquifers. This groundwater later flows back to the surface in springs, or more spectacularly 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.

Lake Chungar and Parinacota volcano in northern Chile

High tide (left) and low tide (right)

Tides are the cyclic rising and falling of Earth's ocean surface 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 result 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 seashore that is submerged at high tide and exposed at low tide, the intertidal zone, is an important ecological product of ocean tides.

Agriculture For drinking Water purification facility Hygiene : The ability of water to make solutions and emulsions is used for washing. Chemical uses Extinguishing fires Water industry Industrial applications Food processing
Irrigation of field crops

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

Ice used for cooling.

Water can be used to cook foods such as noodles. Mineral Water

1.6 billion people have gained access to a safe water source since 1990.The proportion of people in developing countries with access to safe water is calculated to have improved from 30% in 1970 to 71% in 1990, 79% in 2000 and 84% in 2004. This trend is projected to continue.To halve, by 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water is one of the Millennium Development Goals. This goal is projected to be reached. A 2006 United Nations report stated that "there is enough water for everyone", but that access to it is hampered by mismanagement and corruption. The UN World Water Development Report (WWDR, 2003) from the World Water Assessment 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 currently have insufficient fresh water for minimal hygiene. More than 2.2 million people died in 2000 from waterborne diseases (related to the consumption of contaminated water) or drought. In 2004, the UK charity WaterAid reported that a child dies every 15 seconds from easily preventable water-related diseases; often this means lack of sewage disposa

Only forty-six percent of people in Africa have safe drinking water.

Water pollution is the contamination of water bodies (e.g. lakes, rivers, oceans, groundwater). Water pollution affects plants and organisms living in these bodies of water and, in almost all cases the effect is damaging either to individual species and populations, but also to the natural biological communities. Water pollution occurs when pollutants are discharged directly or indirectly into water bodies without adequate treatment to remove harmful compounds. Water pollution is a major problem in the global context. It has been suggested that it is the leading worldwide cause of deaths and diseases, and that it accounts for the deaths of more than 14,000 people daily. An estimated 700 million Indians have no access to a proper toilet, and 1,000 Indian children die of diarrheal sickness every day.Some 90% of China's cities suffer from some degree of water pollution, and nearly 500 million people lack access to safe drinking water.In addition to the acute problems of water pollution in developing countries, industrialized countries continue to struggle with pollution problems as well. In the most recent national report on water quality in the United States, 45 percent of assessed stream miles, 47 percent of assessed lake acres, and 32 percent of assessed bay and estuarine square miles were classified as polluted. Water is typically referred to as polluted when it is impaired by anthropogenic contaminants and either does not support a human use, like serving as drinking water, and/or undergoes a marked shift in its ability to support its constituent biotic communities, such as fish. Natural phenomena such as volcanoes, algae blooms, storms, and earthquakes also cause major changes in water quality and the ecological status of water.

Raw sewage and industrial waste flows across international borders New River passes from Mexicali to Calexico, California. Point source pollution - Shipyard - Rio de Janeiro.

Millions depend on the polluted Ganges river.

Deer Island Waste Water Treatment Plant serving Boston, Massachusetts and vicinit

Point source pollution Point source pollution refers to contaminants that enter a waterway through a discrete conveyance, such as a pipe or ditch.

Non-point source pollution Non-point source (NPS) pollution refers to diffuse contamination that does not originate from a single discrete source

The specific contaminants leading to pollution in water include a wide spectrum of chemicals, pathogens, and physical or sensory changes such as elevated temperature and discoloration. While many of the chemicals and substances that are regulated may be naturally occurring (calcium, sodium, iron, manganese, etc.) the concentration is often the key in determining what is a natural component of water, and what is a contaminant. Oxygen-depleting substances may be natural materials, such as plant matter (e.g. leaves and grass) as well as man-made chemicals. Other natural and anthropogenic substances may cause turbidity (cloudiness) which blocks light and disrupts plant growth, and clogs the gills of some fish species. Many of the chemical substances are toxic. Pathogens can produce waterborne diseases in either human or animal hosts. Alteration of water's physical chemistry includes acidity (change in pH), electrical conductivity, temperature, and eutrophication. Eutrophication is an increase in the concentration of chemical nutrients in an ecosystem to an extent that increases in the primary productivity of the ecosystem. Depending on the degree of eutrophication, subsequent negative environmental effects such as anoxia (oxygen depletion) and severe reductions in water quality may occur, affecting fish and other animal populations.