Portal:Water

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Water

Water in two states: liquid (including the clouds, which are examples of aerosols), and solid (ice).

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.

Featured article

Hoover Dam by Ansel Adams, 1942

Hoover Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, on the border between the U.S. states of Nevada and Arizona. It was constructed between 1931 and 1936 during the Great Depression and was dedicated on September 30, 1935, by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Its construction was the result of a massive effort involving thousands of workers, and cost over one hundred lives. Originally known as Boulder Dam from 1933, it was officially renamed Hoover Dam, for President Herbert Hoover, by a joint resolution of Congress in 1947.

Since about 1900, the Black Canyon and nearby Boulder Canyon had been investigated for their potential to support a dam that would control floods, provide irrigation water and produce hydroelectric power. In 1928, Congress authorized the project. The winning bid to build the dam was submitted by a consortium called Six Companies, Inc., which began construction on the dam in early 1931. Such a large concrete structure had never been built before, and some of the techniques were unproven. The torrid summer weather and lack of facilities near the site also presented difficulties. Nevertheless, Six Companies turned the dam over to the federal government on March 1, 1936, more than two years ahead of schedule.

Hoover Dam impounds Lake Mead, the largest reservoir in the United States by volume (when it is full). The dam is located near Boulder City, Nevada, a municipality originally constructed for workers on the construction project, about 30 mi (48 km) southeast of Las Vegas, Nevada. The dam's generators provide power for public and private utilities in Nevada, Arizona, and California. Hoover Dam is a major tourist attraction; nearly a million people tour the dam each year. The heavily traveled U.S. Route 93 (US 93) ran along the dam's crest until October 2010, when the Hoover Dam Bypass opened. Read more...

Featured picture

Water cycle.png

Did you know...

DYK Question Mark

... that the International Water Management Institute celebrated its 25th anniversary last year?

... that the International Water Centre celebrated its 5th birthday last year?

... that the National Rural Water Association represents more than 26,242 water and wastewater utility members?

... that "water bears" are small, segmented animals that can survive in a dehydrated state for nearly 10 years?

... that there are at least 15 different forms of crystalline ice?

... that water memory is a controversial homeopathic concept, which holds that water is capable of containing "memory" of particles dissolved in it?

... that there are more particles in a glass of water than grains of sand on earth?

... that there is a new definition for Earth's water cycle that includes the three "interactive" cycles: cosmic water cycle; atmospheric water cycle, and oceanic water cycle (new ocean recycled from center of Earth about every 7 million years) The Water Channel TV

Water Rights

  • "The Arizona Court of Appeals recently upheld a decision that the Arizona Department of Water Resources has the right to issue instream flow permits and affirmed the principle that instream flow and in situ water rights need not be diversionary." [1]

Photo gallery

  • UNESCO World Water Assessment Programme photo library
  • The UK Collection of Freshwater Sites
  • HyDis - Hydrologic Data and Information System GIS maps
  • Water Science Picture Gallery from U.S. Geological Survey
  • FAO Water Multimedia Gallery featuring animations and videos

Water News

  • The World Water Assessment Programme monitors freshwater issues and provides recommendations
  • The Source Water and Sanitation News Service provides news in English, French and Spanish with an emphasis on rural and peri-urban areas in developing countries
  • UNESCO Water Portal and weekly newsletter
  • Dundee UNESCO Centre a portal for Water Law, Policy and Science from the University of Dundee
  • Water Planning Tools - news, reviews and updates for water planners and managers, Australia
  • [2] - [The Water Network - knowledge platform for the Water professionals to connect share knowledge.Switzerland
  • Global Water News Watch, from SAHRA in Arizona USA
  • U.S. Water Monitor - a portal to federal water information
  • Watershed News from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • USDA Soil Conservation Service website news
  • National Rural Water Association NRWA news and press releases
  • The 2005 Preliminary Report of the Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable (SWRR) is now available.
  • India Water Portal Community-contributed water resources, articles, news, Q&A, data, events, opportunities, photos and videos.
  • Alberta WaterPortal Water news, info, events, and community.

Things you can do


Here are some tasks awaiting attention:
  • Expand : water footprint
  • Stubs : Expand water stubs
  • Other : * Invite water experts to contribute their information.
    • Add your expert knowledge for your local river at WikiProject Rivers.
    • Help rotate/refresh the three items in the "Did you know?" box.
    • Expand articles on local lakes at WikiProject Lakes
    • Write or improve an article on a country whose water sector you know well at Category:Water supply and sanitation by country

Categories

Wikiprojects

  • WikiProject Lakes describes the Earth's lakes. The project aims to consolidate and unify pages relating to lakes around the world.

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