How does water occur in nature ?

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Water is widely distributed in nature both free as well as in the combined forms. Free water occurs as a solid (ice and snow), liquid (water) and gas (water vapor). Distribution of water in nature is described below.

1. As solid: In the solid state, water exists as ice and snow. Water in the solid state occurs only the peaks of high mountains, in the Polar Regions. In Antarctica, water exists mostly as ice and snow.

2. As liquid: in this liquid form, water occurs in ocean, seas, rivers, lakes, ponds, springs, wells etc. Liquid water covers more than two-third of the earth’s surface. The total ocean water is about 3×1018 cubic meter. Animal and plant tissues also contain water. About 75% of the body weight of animals is due to the presence of water in their tissues.

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3. As gas: In the gaseous state, water exists as water vapor or steam. The earth’s atmosphere contains a large amount of water vapor in the atmosphere makes it humid.

4. As water of crystallization: water also exists in the combined form as water of crystallization in a large number of crystalline salts and minerals. Some typical salts which contain water of crystallization are ,

  1. Copper Sulphate or copper(II) sulphate CuSO4.5H2O
  2. Iron Sulphate or iron(II) sulphate FeSO4.7H2O
  3. Borax or Sodium borate Na2B4O7.10H2O

In our country, both the surface and the ground water are available. This water comes from the rainfall and snow as a part of the water (hydrological) cycle.

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