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

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Introduction

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.

Middle

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.

Conclusion

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.

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