What if all surface water evaporates from Earth?

Published on 17 March 2021 05:00 PM

Ever since we are sent to school, we are taught that wat er is one of the essential elements for the survival of all living things. We are taught the utility of water and its significance. I’m pretty sure that all of us have tried to go for a day or so without water just to check if we can pull it off. Sadly, we couldn’t do that. In everything we do, we need water. But what happens if all the water evaporates from Earth immediately? How would the lifeforce stay alive? How will everything continue functioning? What do we drink to keep surviving? We looked into it and here is the timeline we think will come to action if water evaporates from Earth starting right now! From time to time, we keep hearing the news that massive glaciers are melting away, and the world keeps changing constantly. How would it be in a million years from now? Let’s pause for a moment and ponder, shall we?

We’re aware that substances can exist in three main states: solid, liquid, and gas. Evaporation is just one way a substance, like water, can change between these states. When solid water is exposed to enough heat, it will melt and return to a liquid. As that liquid water is further heated, it evaporates and becomes a gas—water vapour.

In the water cycle, evaporation occurs when sunlight warms the surface of the water. The heat from the sun makes the water molecules move faster and faster until they move so fast, they escape as a gas. Once evaporated, a molecule of water vapour spends about ten days in the air.

As water vapour rises higher in the atmosphere, it begins to cool back down. When it is cool enough, the water vapour condenses and returns to liquid water. These water droplets eventually gather to form clouds and precipitation.

Well, this is the basic process of what we call the water cycle. Now you must be aware that Water is evaporating constantly, even as we speak. Let’s assume that a very rapid evaporation process has commenced. Therefore, in the next 10 minutes, the water on the surface dries up, the process of evaporation constantly working. Like this, water from all across the globe keeps slowly evaporating. Small water bodies dry up, wells are dry now and drinking water is now scarce.

Repercussions of this being living creatures will now be in need of water to sustain and maintain their livelihood, perform their daily activities and so on. More so, they need water to stay alive.

You will be shocked to know that all the water from our oceans can be evaporated and we can be left with nothing but dried-up lands.

I am certain that you will be amazed to know this fact that right now, atmospheric CO2 levels hover around 400 parts per million. Researchers believe that in order for all the water from the oceans to evaporate, this rate has to go up to 1,520 parts per million. However, if we continue at today’s reckless pace of emissions, CO2 levels could climb as high as 910 ppm by 2100. In a month, this whole scenario can turn into something even scarier. With lesser and lesser water to consume, people will resort to violence to find water worthy of consumption. This can lead to resentment and agony in humankind. Scientists will try to create alternatives to water in order to help humans sustain this change but will they be successful? Only time can tell.

Months may turn to years and the dams might have to be created to save the water stored in it from evaporation. So, the water from the dams will be taken up for consumption. But sadly, water can only last for a while. With the environment depleting, this future does not seem that far away.

We learnt that water is carried in the air for about 10 days as a molecule of water vapour. Now, how long do you think it might take for all the water to go up? Our oceans technically would need a couple of million years to dry up. But, in those million years, we might either have a replacement for water or keep waiting for the inevitable to happen.

In case, this happens immediately, I am talking right here, right now, then I don’t think we have any disaster management plan in place. Give it a thought, right? What is your backup plan in case you don’t have even a drop of water around you? For how long will life exist?

Well, in a million years, we might have found alternative sources of water to survive or depleted all of what we have. Tell us what do you think?