Global fresh water and air volumes

Global fresh water and air volumes

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Credit: FELIX PHARAND-DESCHENES, GLOBAIA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Global fresh water and air volumes. Illustration of the planet Earth with a visualisation of two spheres showing the amount of accessible fresh water in the world (blue) and air in the Earth's atmosphere (grey). The spheres show how finite water and air supplies are. The water sphere measures 1390 kilometres across and has a volume of 1.4 billion cubic kilometres. This includes all the water in the oceans, seas, ice caps, lakes and rivers as well as ground water, and that in the atmosphere. The air sphere measures 1999 kilometres across and weighs 5140 trillion tonnes. As the atmosphere extends from Earth it becomes less dense. Half of the air lies within the first 5 kilometres of the atmosphere.

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