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Case study : water conservation

Refer to [link] and then answer the following questions:

  1. Explain what is meant by...
    1. surface water
    2. ground water
  2. Which water management area has the...
    1. lowest surface water yield?
    2. highest surface water yield?
    3. lowest total yield?
    4. highest total yield?
  3. Look at the country's total water requirements for 2000 and the total available yield .
    1. Calculate what percentage of the country's water yield is already being used up.
    2. Do you think that the country's total water requirements will increase or decrease in the coming years? Give a reason for your answer.
  4. South Africa is already placing a huge strain on existing water resources. In groups of 3-4, discuss ways that the country's demand for water could be reduced. Present your ideas to the rest of the class for discussion.


  • Water is critical for the survival of life on Earth. It is an important part of the cells of living organisms and is used by humans in homes, industry, mining and agriculture.
  • Water moves between the land and sky in the water cycle . The water cycle describes the changes in phase that take place in water as it circulates across the Earth. The water cycle is driven by solar radiation.
  • Some of the important processes that form part of the water cycle are evaporation, transpiration, condensation, precipitation, infiltration and surface runoff. Together these processes ensure that water is cycled between the land and sky.
  • It is the microscopic structure of water that determines its unique properties.
  • Water molecules are polar and are held together by hydrogen bonds . These characteristics affect the properties of water.
  • Some of the unique properties of water include its ability to absorb infra-red radiation, its high specific heat, high heat of vaporisation and the fact that the solid phase of water is less dense that its liquid phase.
  • These properties of water help it to sustain life on Earth by moderating climate, regulating the internal environment of living organisms and allowing liquid water to exist below ice, even if temperatures are below zero.
  • Water is also a good solvent . This property means that it is a good transport medium in the cells of living organisms and that it can dissolve gases and other compounds that may be needed by aquatic plants and animals.
  • Human activities threaten the quality of water resources through pollution and altered runoff patterns.
  • As human populations grow, there is a greater demand for water. In many areas, this demand exceeds the amount of water available for use. Managing water wisely is important in ensuring that there will always be water available both for human use and to maintain natural ecosystems.

Summary exercise

  1. Give a word or term for each of the following phrases:
    1. The continuous circulation of water across the earth.
    2. The change in phase of water from gas to liquid.
    3. The movement of water across a land surface.
    4. The temperature at which water changes from liquid to gas.
  2. In each of the following multiple choice questions, choose the one correct answer from the list provided.
    1. Many of the unique properties of water (e.g. its high specific heat and high boiling point) are due to:
      1. strong covalent bonds between the hydrogen and oxygen atoms in each water molecule
      2. the equal distribution of charge in a water molecule
      3. strong hydrogen bonds between water molecules
      4. the linear arrangement of atoms in a water molecule
    2. Which of the following statements is false ?
      1. Most of the water on earth is in the oceans.
      2. The hardening of surfaces in urban areas results in increased surface runoff.
      3. Water conservation is important because water cannot be recycled.
      4. Irrigation is one of the largest water users in South Africa.
  3. The sketch below shows a process that leads to rainfall in town X. The town has been relying only on rainfall for its water supply because it has no access to rivers or tap water. A group of people told the community that they will never run out of rainwater because it will never stop raining .
    1. List the processes labelled P 1 and P 2 that lead to rainfall in town X.
    2. Is this group of people correct in saying that town X will never run out of rainwater? Justify your answer using the sketch. Recently, the amount of rainwater has decreased significantly. Various reasons have been given to explain the drought. Some of the community members are blaming this group who told them that it will never stop raining.
    3. What scientific arguments can you use to convince the community members that this group of people should not be blamed for the drought?
    4. What possible strategies can the community leaders adopt to ensure that they have a regular supply of water.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
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Source:  OpenStax, Siyavula textbooks: grade 10 physical science. OpenStax CNX. Aug 29, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11245/1.3
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