The water cycle is the endless movement of water through the Earth’s surface, underground and atmosphere. The water is in constant motion through evaporation, precipitation, condensation, runoff and transpiration. Water can exist as a gas, solid or liquid and the water cycle is very important to life on Earth. There are many water cycle facts which will be discussed in this article.
Some Amazing Water Cycle Facts
Facts about the water cycle include that it is also known as the hydrologic cycle and is the continuous movement of water below, above and on the Earth’s surface. Water goes through different phases and involves the exchange of energy and leads to changes in temperature. Another fact is, it is needed for the maintenance of most life on the planet and that water has reshaped the Earth through time.
- Water cannot be created by man. It is a natural resource and through the water cycle, the water supplies for man are replenished. It is found is aquifers, which are underground water reservoirs. Water in these reservoirs can be stored in the Earth’s surface for thousands of years.
- The water cycle is driven by the sun. Water changes states and creates energy as well as absorbs energy. Water is found in liquid, gas and solid form.
- The water cycle continuously recycles water. Clouds become heavy from collecting water, and then they release it in the form of precipitation. Precipitation is rain, sleet, snow or hail. Once the water falls from the clouds, it becomes part of a body of water or it seeps into the ground.
- Water will evaporate from the plant leaves into the atmosphere in a process called transpiration. This is a vital part of the water cycle.
- About 70% of Earth’s surface is covered with water. Scientists believe that at one time, during an ice age, the entire Earth was covered with large glaciers that helped shape the Earth’s landscape into what it is today.
- Glaciers still exist today. Water is stored in glaciers, snow and icecaps, not just in underground reservoirs or bodies of water.
- Of all the water on Earth’s surface, only about 3% of that water is fresh water. Fresh water is water that can be used for drinking. The salt content in oceans makes it impossible for consumption. Oceans make up the majority of the water on Earth’s surface.
The water cycle has water existing in three different states. Gas, liquid and ice are the three states and these states keep the water on Earth at a fairly constant position. The cycle is endless and will remain so as long as the sun continues to feed the cycle with energy. Other interesting water cycle facts include there is no end or start to the cycle. Water may remain suspended in certain steps for thousands of years before it is released to move on in the cycle. Groundwater that is extremely deep can be around 10,000 years old.