The Concept of the Water Cycle: Types, Benefits, and How to Protect It!

The Concept of the Water Cycle – Water is an important compound for all life on earth, but not necessarily on other planets. It has the chemical formula H 2 O, which means that each molecule contains one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms. The two are linked by covalent bonds.

The earth itself is covered by water as much as approximately 71% of its share. There are 1.4 trillion cubic kilometers of water available on earth. most of it can be found in the sea (salt water) and on ice sheets (at the poles and on mountain peaks).

Not only that, water can also be found in rivers, clouds, rain, water vapor, surface fresh water, lakes and sea ice. Water in some of these places moves following a water cycle. The water evaporates and then falls again as rain.

The following is a further explanation of the concept of the water cycle. You can listen to it.

The Concept of the Water Cycle and Its Stages!

The concept of the water cycle or also known as the hydrologic cycle or the water cycle is the circulation of water which describes the movement of water molecules (H 2 O ) from the earth’s atmosphere and vice versa. This cycle never stops so that it forms a circular series of journeys of water molecules on earth.

The concept of the water cycle has three stages as follows.

1. Evaporation/Transpiration

Evaporation is the process of evaporation of water originating from rivers, lakes, seas and other bodies of water. Meanwhile, transpiration is the release of water molecules as a result of metabolism from plants. Both have the same principle, namely being part of the process of changing liquids into gases that will gather in the atmosphere.

2. Condensation

Condensation is the process of changing water from gas to liquid. This process is known as condensation. This process is the opposite of evaporation or vaporization.

In the hydrologic cycle, condensation occurs in the atmosphere due to changes in temperature and pressure. As a result of condensation, water will gather to form black clouds which are ready to fall as rain when they reach saturation point.

3. Precipitation

Precipitation is the result or product of condensation. Precipitation occurs due to cooling and the addition of water vapor so that it is able to form clouds reaching the saturation point. The more water vapor that is formed in the atmosphere, the more water droplets in the clouds and the weight.

When the clouds are no longer able to accommodate the amount of water that is formed, the water will be released in the form of rain. Water that falls to earth can be liquid or snow. It is affected by temperature.

Water that falls as snow when the temperature is below freezing (0 0 C or 32 0 F). this is caused by the low temperature in winter, water vapor in the atmosphere will condense into solid ice without going through the liquid stage.

The ice crystals that form will absorb, then freeze the additional moisture from the surrounding air into snow crystals. Then, fell to earth.

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In addition to the stages of the water cycle, You must also understand several terms regarding the water cycle as follows.

  • Infiltration means that water seeps into the pores of the soil.
  • Interception means rainwater that is trapped above the plants then evaporates before it reaches the ground.
  • Advection is a condition where the awn moves to another place due to angina.
  • Run off is a condition where water moves on land from a high place to a low place.

Types of Water Cycle

The water cycle consists of several types, including short cycles, medium cycles, and long cycles. The following describes the three cycles.

1. Long Cycle

The long cycle begins with the evaporation and condensation of seawater. the clouds that form are carried by the wind to higher ground in areas of land. The clouds that have formed will join with water vapor that comes from the evaporation of lakes, rivers, and plant transpiration.

Because it is affected by the altitude, the water vapor hits the cold air layer and turns into snow. Thus, there is snowfall in winter and also forms chunks of ice on high mountains.

Chunks of ice in the mountains will slide to a lower place because of the force of gravity. Chunks of ice that slide due to gravity are called glaciers. Glaciers exposed to high temperatures then melt and flow through inland waters which will return to the sea.

2. Medium Cycle

Cycles are occurring when seawater evaporates. He will be carried by the wind towards the mainland. At a certain altitude, water vapor will condense into clouds.

Then, the clouds will turn into rain that falls on the land. Then, seeping into the soil, some will be absorbed by plant roots and some will be carried away by surface water flows such as rivers and ditches. Water will pass through various channels that will bring it back to the sea.

3. Short Cycle

The short cycle begins with the process of evaporating seawater into the atmosphere. At a certain height, water vapor will condense to form clouds. Clouds that are no longer able to hold the weight of water will experience precipitation and rain occurs. Thus, the water falls back into the sea.

Benefits of Water for Life

All living things on earth need water to support their survival. Here are some of the benefits of water for humans, plants and animals.

1. Benefits of Water for Humans

Human life cannot be separated from water. The human body itself consists of more water. Here are the benefits of water for humans.

  • For transportation activities, for example boats and ships.
  • For household purposes such as cooking, eating, and drinking.
  • For bathing, washing, mopping, and so on.
  • For trade purposes such as restaurants, hotels, industry, factories, and so on.
  • For irrigation of rice fields or agricultural and plantation activities.

2. Benefits of Water for Plants

Plants also need water to survive. Here are some of the benefits of water for plants.

  • To encourage the process of respiration in plants.
  • To help the process of photosynthesis or the manufacture of food.
  • To transport nutrients and nutrients from the soil.
  • Water is the source of life for plants.
  • Water is a tool for the process of movement in plants.

3. Benefits of Water for Animals

Animals also need water to maintain their survival. Here are some of the benefits of water for animals.

  • For eating and drinking purposes.
  • Water is a habitat for several animals, such as fish, crocodiles, snakes, and so on. Be it water in rivers, lakes or seas.
  • Water helps animals to produce milk.
  • Water helps maintain the animal’s body temperature.
  • Water helps animals to regulate their blood pressure.
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Activities that Damage the Water Cycle

The water cycle can be disrupted or even damaged due to human activities. Here are some activities that need to be avoided to maintain the continuity of the water cycle.

1. Damaging Nature

Humans often exploit nature recklessly. For example, cutting down forests continuously will have a negative impact on the sustainability of the water cycle. This is due to the reduced water absorption area.

In addition, water pollution in rivers or seas will have a negative impact on the water cycle. Air pollution also contributes to a negative impact on the water cycle. Rainwater that falls to the earth and seeps into the soil and contains acids will affect plant growth.

The effects of acid rain are influenced by gases in the atmosphere. Other gases that become pollutants can also inhibit the evaporation process or the evaporation process in the water cycle.

2. Wasteful Water

The habit of saving water is a wise attitude to maintain the natural balance of small things. Some ways to save water include closing the faucet tightly when finished using it. Use sufficient water when bathing and washing clothes.

You can also collect rainwater for washing clothes, watering plants and other activities. Before using water, it’s best to remember that water must be used wisely and only as needed.

3. Overdevelopment

The number of buildings and paved roads has reduced the water catchment area. This will certainly disrupt the water cycle. Therefore, efforts are needed to balance the water cycle. For example by building water catchment tanks, dams, reservoirs, waterways, and water catchment areas overgrown with plants or trees.

How to Preserve Water

Water is very important for human, plant and animal life. As creatures endowed with reason, humans should take a bigger role in maintaining the water cycle. Here are some easy steps to conserve water.

1. Use Water Sparingly

Drought can occur not only caused by global warming. But, also by the wasteful and irresponsible use of water. Humans have several habits of wasting water including taking too long a shower, washing vehicles, forgetting to turn off the tap water, and so on.

These habits can reduce the amount of water. Simple steps, namely using enough water and not forgetting to turn off the water tap.

2. Reduce the Use of Chemicals

Chemicals that dissolve in water can damage aquatic ecosystems. For example, chemicals can destroy algae which are a food source for plankton.

Therefore, to conserve water, You can start reducing the use of chemicals such as laundry soap and detergent. Instead, You can use lerak fruit or other alternative natural ingredients.

3. Dispose of trash in its place

Garbage dumped haphazardly in ditches, rivers or other waterways has the potential to cause water pollution. Worse, it can cause flooding. This of course also disrupts the survival and environment of other living things.

Polluted rivers or seas disrupt the survival of aquatic animals and plants. Not only that, polluted water cannot be used to meet daily needs.

4. Dispose of Chemicals Properly and Properly

Chemicals such as paint, oil or other chemicals that are disposed of carelessly can damage aquatic ecosystems. Not only that, it can also damage the atmosphere. Therefore, the remains of chemicals must be disposed of properly.

5. Recycling Used Materials

Used household materials that are no longer used can be recycled to minimize wasted materials. For example by using waste mineral water bottles for pencil cases or something else. Small steps by utilizing used materials can save the earth from damage.