• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss how the properties of water affect living organisms and why water might be considered essential to life on Earth

Extracts from this document...


Discuss how the properties of water affect living organisms and why water might be considered essential to life on Earth Water is the most abundant molecule in cells, whole organisms and on earth. It is necessary for life to exist on earth and this can be seen as it makes up between 60% and 95% of the mass of living organisms. Water makes up 75% of the Earth showing that it is needed for life as it is so readily available. Water is a polar molecule this means that it has positively and negatively charged areas. Water is made up of two positively charged hydrogen atoms and one negatively charged oxygen atom. ?+ ?- ?????+ As a result of this polarity adjacent water molecules are attracted and form hydrogen bonds. These form when the slightly negative oxygen atoms bond with the slightly positive hydrogen bonds from another water molecule. ...read more.


The use of water as a solvent is very important. All of the substances which are essential for cells and organisms to function are carried in solution. Also, all metabolic reactions occur in solution. The hydrogen bonding between water molecules is important for it's thermal properties. The high specific heat capacity of water is important for living organisms which need to keep particular temperatures in order to ensure optimum enzyme activity. The high water content of cells and tissues help to maintain a constant temperature. In this way water acts as a temperature buffer. Hydrogen bonding is also the reason that ice is less dense than water and so it floats. This allows the water below the ice to be insulated keeping a constant temperature in the water for all the organisms living in the water. ...read more.


Water is used to bring the gametes of the male and female together in fertilisation. In mammals the foetus then develops in a water filled sac providing physical and thermal stability. In conclusion water is essential to life on Earth. We can see this because without water many metabolic and enzyme reactions would not be able to take place. These reactions are essential for the survival of all organisms. Further proof that water is essential to life on Earth is that without water, sexual reproduction cannot take place and the foetus of mammals would not be able to survive and therefore humans would not be alive. Water is also used by many organisms as a temperature controller. Therefore without water many organisms would either overheat or freeze. Without water, plants would also die as they need minerals from the soil and this is taken up in solution. They would also lose their turgidity, wilt, and die. These facts show that water is essential to life on Earth. ?? ?? ?? ?? Sanil Modasia ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Green Plants as Organisms section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Green Plants as Organisms essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The roles water in living organisms and water as a habitat for organisms

    5 star(s)

    Water as a solvent: - It is an excellent solvent for ions and polar molecules because of its polarity and its hydrogen bonding. This is also because the water molecules are attracted to them, collect around them and separate them. This is what happens when a chemical dissolves in water.

  2. Describe how the properties of water are related to its roles in living organisms ...

    This leads to a small positive charge on the hydrogen and a small negative charge on the oxygen. This happens because the oxygen atoms have a greater likeness for electrons than hydrogen atoms. As water is transparent and absorbs light rays very quickly it allows animals to see and aquatic plants to photosynthesise up to 600 feet below the surface.

  1. Temperature regulation in mammals & birds.

    4 15 1.5 21 74.2 3.5 (1dp) 5 14.75 1.25 15 60.4 4.0 (1dp) 6 7.25 1 5.3 24.3 4.6 (1dp) 7 8.75 1.5 10.6 44.8 4.2 (1dp) 8 9.75 1.5 14.5 49.5 3.4 (1dp) 9 15 1.8 32.5 90.8 2.8 (1dp) I found that the controlled temperature from which every reading should begin should be 70�C,

  2. Show Why Water Is Biologically Important In Living Organisms And Why It's Important As ...

    Water's solvent properties are essential. Photosynthesis uses water as a source of hydrogen atoms that are needed to produce glucose, which is then stored in the plant cells as starch or used for respiration. Without water these two essential reactions would not occur and life would not be able to continue on earth.

  1. Is photorespiration an effective mechanism for protecting against photoinhibition?

    favours photorespiration but more quantitative evidence is required. Also the intermediates of the cycle (particularly the amino groups) can be siphoned off into other pathways to create pigments (or perhaps the phenylpropanoids?) which would also aid in photoprotection. Previous studies have involved reducing the [O2] down to below 1-2%, thus inhibiting the oxygenase activity of Rubisco.

  2. The Importance of Water to Living Organisms

    be overcome in order for the liquid water to be vaporised into a gas. Again, the reason for water's high latent heat of vaporisation, is due to the hydrogen bonding between the molecules, which need to be broken in order to vaporise it.

  1. Why is Water Essential to Life.

    More substances dissolve in water than in any other liquid. The reason why water is so good at dissolving is because of its capability relates to its polarity; water offers positive and negative charges to which other atoms of molecules can attach.

  2. Water is said to have unique properties. Explain what these are and show in ...

    Carbon dioxide also dissolves in water to form a weak carbonic acid. The heat capacity of Water Heat capacity is defined as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1gram by 1C. Water has a very high heat capacity compared with other liquids it therefore changes temperature more slowly than other compounds that gain or lose energy.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work