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Chapter 3 - Global Distribution Resources and Use

Water Distribution and Properties

  • 70% of Earth’s surface is covered in water.

  • 97% of water is located in the oceans.

  • 3% of water is freshwater, most of the freshwater is located in the ice caps and glaciers.

  • Unique properties of water

    • Water has a high boiling point

    • A lot of energy is needed to evaporate water

    • Water dissolves many compounds

    • Water expands as it freezes

    • Water adheres to many solid surfaces

Freshwater

  • Freshwater

    • The places with the highest amount of freshwater are the places with high precipitation and small populations.

    • The places with the lowest amount of freshwater are the places with low precipitation and large populations.

    • The use of freshwater is growing at twice the rate of population growth.

Aquifers

  • Aquifers

    • Geologic feature that contains water in quantities sufficient to support a spring or well.

    • Holds 30 times more water in the US than all US lakes and rivers combined.

  • Important terms

    • Confined Aquifer - an aquifer below the land that is saturated with water.

    • Recharge Zone - The area above an aquifer that supplies water.

    • Unconfined Aquifer - An aquifer where the upper water surface is at atmospheric pressure

    • Unsaturated Zone - The zone immediately below the land surface that is not totally saturated with water.

    • Water Permeability - The ability of a material to allow passage through rocks with water

    • Water Table - The level below that ground is saturated with water.

Types of Ice

  • Glaciers

    • Body of dense ice that only forms on land.

    • 99% of glacial ice is contained in ice sheets in polar regions.

    • Largest reservoir of freshwater in the world.

  • Ice Sheets

    • Mass of glacial ice that is greater than 20,000 square miles in area.

    • The only ice sheets are Antarctica and Greenland.

  • Ice Shelves

    • Thick floating platform of ice that forms when a glacier or ice sheet flows down to a coastline and onto the ocean surface.

    • Only found in Antarctica, Greenland, and Canada

  • Sea Ice

    • Frozen seawater.

    • It floats on the ocean surface.

    • It is found primarily in the Northern Hemisphere.

Oceans

  • 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered in oceans.

  • More than half of this area is under 10,000 feet.

  • Oceans have a significant effect on the biosphere, because oceanic evaporation is the primary source of precipitation.

  • Oceanic Circulation

    • Heat is transferred to the equator by ocean currents.

    • Warm waters near the surface and cold water deeper in the ocean move by convection currents.

  • The Great Ocean Conveyor Belt

    • There is constant motion in the form of a global ocean.

    • Cold water sinks to the bottom of the ocean

    • Warm water rises to the surface.

    • Cold water will go south towards the Antarctic

    • Warm water will come back up to the Pacific

    • This conveyor belt helps regulate the amount of sea ice in polar regions.

Agricultural, Industrial, and Municipal Use

  • There are 3 types of water withdrawal

    • Agricultural

    • Industrial

    • Municipal

  • Water Shortages

    • The rate of water consumption is growing twice as fast as population growth.

    • Water is a limited factor as it limits the amount of food that can be produced in a region.

  • Water Diversion

    • Groundwater is the largest source of freshwater in the world.

    • Freshwater is being diverted into many different purposes.

    • Environmental consequences from this diversion can be

      • Concentration of salts and minerals and pollutants may increase

      • Can reduce the habitat for fish and can impact feeding and spawning success

      • Temperature and oxygen levels can increase.

      • A reduction of the native populations of animals and plants.

Water Distribution and Properties

  • 70% of Earth’s surface is covered in water.

  • 97% of water is located in the oceans.

  • 3% of water is freshwater, most of the freshwater is located in the ice caps and glaciers.

  • Unique properties of water

    • Water has a high boiling point

    • A lot of energy is needed to evaporate water

    • Water dissolves many compounds

    • Water expands as it freezes

    • Water adheres to many solid surfaces

Freshwater

  • Freshwater

    • The places with the highest amount of freshwater are the places with high precipitation and small populations.

    • The places with the lowest amount of freshwater are the places with low precipitation and large populations.

    • The use of freshwater is growing at twice the rate of population growth.

Aquifers

  • Aquifers

    • Geologic feature that contains water in quantities sufficient to support a spring or well.

    • Holds 30 times more water in the US than all US lakes and rivers combined.

  • Important terms

    • Confined Aquifer - an aquifer below the land that is saturated with water.

    • Recharge Zone - The area above an aquifer that supplies water.

    • Unconfined Aquifer - An aquifer where the upper water surface is at atmospheric pressure

    • Unsaturated Zone - The zone immediately below the land surface that is not totally saturated with water.

    • Water Permeability - The ability of a material to allow passage through rocks with water

    • Water Table - The level below that ground is saturated with water.

Types of Ice

  • Glaciers

    • Body of dense ice that only forms on land.

    • 99% of glacial ice is contained in ice sheets in polar regions.

    • Largest reservoir of freshwater in the world.

  • Ice Sheets

    • Mass of glacial ice that is greater than 20,000 square miles in area.

    • The only ice sheets are Antarctica and Greenland.

  • Ice Shelves

    • Thick floating platform of ice that forms when a glacier or ice sheet flows down to a coastline and onto the ocean surface.

    • Only found in Antarctica, Greenland, and Canada

  • Sea Ice

    • Frozen seawater.

    • It floats on the ocean surface.

    • It is found primarily in the Northern Hemisphere.

Oceans

  • 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered in oceans.

  • More than half of this area is under 10,000 feet.

  • Oceans have a significant effect on the biosphere, because oceanic evaporation is the primary source of precipitation.

  • Oceanic Circulation

    • Heat is transferred to the equator by ocean currents.

    • Warm waters near the surface and cold water deeper in the ocean move by convection currents.

  • The Great Ocean Conveyor Belt

    • There is constant motion in the form of a global ocean.

    • Cold water sinks to the bottom of the ocean

    • Warm water rises to the surface.

    • Cold water will go south towards the Antarctic

    • Warm water will come back up to the Pacific

    • This conveyor belt helps regulate the amount of sea ice in polar regions.

Agricultural, Industrial, and Municipal Use

  • There are 3 types of water withdrawal

    • Agricultural

    • Industrial

    • Municipal

  • Water Shortages

    • The rate of water consumption is growing twice as fast as population growth.

    • Water is a limited factor as it limits the amount of food that can be produced in a region.

  • Water Diversion

    • Groundwater is the largest source of freshwater in the world.

    • Freshwater is being diverted into many different purposes.

    • Environmental consequences from this diversion can be

      • Concentration of salts and minerals and pollutants may increase

      • Can reduce the habitat for fish and can impact feeding and spawning success

      • Temperature and oxygen levels can increase.

      • A reduction of the native populations of animals and plants.