Facts about Water.

Water Cycle.

Water comes to us through a complex and truly remarkable process.

Water falls from the sky as 'precipitation' - rain, even snow or hail.

Much of it then runs off into creeks, rivers, and ultimately the ocean.

When it hits the ground and soaks in, it's called 'infiltration'. Some of the water that falls to the ground also turns to a gas and rises again as 'evaporation'.

This water vapour can then turn back into liquid in the sky - as 'condensation'. When that gets heavy enough, it falls as 'precipitation' and our 'water cycle' begins again.

Water Use

The water we term 'run off' and also that from 'infiltration' eventually collects in catchment areas, often the lowest part of the land.

This water can also be collected in dams and then sent off for either human consumption or irrigation of crops.

The water for human consumption is piped to water filtration plans.

There, leaf material, weeds and other solid matter are filtered out and tiny particles like dirt are settled by the addition of compounds.

This is also where fluoride and water cleansing chemicals are added. The water then gets pumped to reservoirs and stored, until it's released for use in our homes.

There's an extensive use of water in the flushing of waste into Sewerage treatment plants.

Water from treatment plants is increasingly being recycled and used to water playing fields and parks, as well gardens in some of the newer urban areas.

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The World's Water

Scientists estimate that 65% of the earth's surface made up of water.

97% of that is salt water in our oceans. 3% is fresh water, yet 2% is not suitable for human consumption, as it's confined to the polar ice caps, alpine areas, the atmosphere and in the soil.

This means that only about 1% of the world's water is available for use by humans and industry.

At Home

Our homes are a major consumers of water. The graph below shows a breakdown of this consumption.

Jem at home