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way smaller than I would have guessed, using my puny brain.
 
Not awesome. What's the use of that? - Stinks of bad statistics, rather: they related something that covers the surface of the third rock to the rock itself. - What's that supposed to say?
(sorry I'm grumpy, but I've seen this pic a bit too often now)
 
Seems like a lot to me. Then again, it looks like the sphere is resting right on top of Salt Lake City, so my interpretation is a bit more visceral than most.
 
I think that view is counter-intuitive to most folks as they think of that whole surface of the Earth being 60+% water and it gives our brains (which tend to think in 2D - like Khan) the concept that there is more water than anything else. This view belies that and shows the true picture. Very nice.
 
"like Khan" love it. A little hidden trekkie code. I think Spock said, "He is intelligent, but not experienced. His pattern indicates two-dimensional thinking". :-)
 
Does this include water under the surface?
 
Seems about right. The deepest point in the ocean is less than 7 miles below the surface, and yet the radius of the Earth is nearly 4,000 miles.
 
Look they managed to compress water (into a sphere). Science joke; couldn't help it
 
Huh... Seems like school should have taught me better :P
 
doesn't seem like enough does it?
 
Right now we fight wars for oil.

In the near future wars will be about water.
 
I wonder if they took into account all the water in the atmosphere...
 
It would be interesting to see a comparison of the amount of material that is above sea level. By that I mean all the mountains and land made into a sphere.
 
not really that new..had something similar to this when I was in school in a class called "Earth Science". Have yet to understand why schools no longer teach anything revalent to the earth today.
 
+Steven James Williams You maybe right, most died in and around swamps what was swamps. If they put the Earth in ball like the water= a different perspective.
 
+Michael McDaid that's exactly the point that a lot of people don't get. I did the math earlier (but didn't save it) and if you took all the space (air, water, and land) that's above the earth's mantle, and made it into a sphere, it would be something like 2000-ish miles across... and someone in a previous post on this commented that they estimated that water sphere in the image to be about 800 miles across. If they were to put that info on the graphic, it wouldn't have as much "wow" factor to it, so it wouldn't help their (USGS) argument/point
 
Also not that this is statistical representation of all liquid fresh water not "all water"
 
So, the Earth is just a bit moist...
 
+Johnny Farnen incorrect... from the article: "The sphere includes all the water in the oceans, seas, ice caps, lakes and rivers as well as groundwater, atmospheric water, and even the water in you, your dog, and your tomato plant"
 
The sphere making up the clean drinkable water would not show up in this picture! Fact, check for yourself.
 
I love these maps that are supposed to scare us into looking at things the way the group or organization wants us to look at them. Go here if you want to read some realistic facts about water on our planet:

http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/geophysics/question157.htm

How is this little drop supposed to take up 70% of our surface area I ask you? The quote states the following on this too:

"The sphere includes all the water in the oceans, seas, ice caps, lakes and rivers as well as groundwater, atmospheric water, and even the water in you, your dog, and your tomato plant."
 
+Andy Laverdiere Jr a sphere made up from the Troposphere, Stratosphere, and Mesosphere would be about 100 miles across compared to that one shown at 860 miles across. that's about 500 times the volume
 
another random bit of info... if you assume the AVERAGE volume of a human is about 0.08 m^3, then if we took all 7 billion people in the world and put them into a blender and molded them into a similar sphere; it wouldn't even be ONE mile across. so there's plenty of water out there. USGS just wants to scare people into conserving water
 
To look at this a little differently, if this were spread evenly across the entire surface of the earth it would be 2.71 km deep. We do not have a water shortage problem on earth, we have a distribution problem.
 
That just seems bogus as hell!!
 
so what happens if you put all the continents into a single sphere? wouldnt it be around 30% of the sphere of water? we need apples to apples comparisons!! lol
 
I guess it's time for some math explanations: The formula for the volume of a sphere is (4/3)*Pi*r^3. The radius of the Earth is 3,963.1676 miles. The deepest point in the ocean is 6.85625 miles below the surface. If we were to assume that the entire globe was covered by water, and that the depth of that water were 6.85625 miles deep at all points, then the non-water volume of the earth would be 259,394,041,162 cubic miles. The total volume of the earth (water included) would be 260,744,961,822 cubic miles, giving us a difference of 1,350,920,661 cubic miles, which means that, even given this very favorable water scenario, water would still only make up about one half of one percent of the earth's total volume.
 
Well, there is the issue of most of it being salt water.
 
top 3 elements in the universe:

1. hydrogen
2.helium
3.oxygen
I dont think we have too much to worry about.
 
uh oh there is more magma than water. lol and earth i guess is just all rocks.
 
What's the point of this? I already recognized that there is a lot of open space that isn't water. I would also challenge you to do the same thing with all of the Earth's land? Once again, you will find a tiny sphere. All this tells us is that there's ton of area on the Earth that is not land and not water. Already knew that.
 
+pat rick I'm not sure if this is being used as a scare tactic, or just a sense of perspective. Another example would be that you could fit an additional 30 earths between the earth and the moon.
 
People! Please think for a moment about the scale here. If that picture represented an earth the size of a basketball, then the deepest parts of the ocean, 7mi deep, would be only the thickness of 3 human hairs. And obviously that little marble of a water drop could spread itself out to that thickness. Think about it. Everybody wants to be quick to call the USGS stupid because, "duh, the oceans are deep, so obviously this is wrong." Like I said in my previous comment, maybe you should accept that the representation of water is correct and then use that to gain a greater appreciation of just how incredibly huge the planet it.
Read the full article: http://goo.gl/c7a04
 
Fascinating. Thank you for sharing.
 
Though the earth is covered with 70% water. You mean to tell me that little sphere which is barely half the size of north America represents all the earth water. Smh.
 
+Richard Coven I think the number is closer to 70% and it's talking about just the SURFACE; 70% of the earth's surface is covered in water. 95.5% of the earth's VOLUME, though is taken up by the cores and mantle (basically metals, rocks, magma, etc).
 
60% of the earth isn't water. You're thinking earth's surface. To put it in perspective, the trip from London, to the center of the earth, is roughly the same distance as it is from London to Minneapolis.
J Wolf
 
The clue is in the verbiage of the article at the base of the image you will see a list of cited sources one of them stated is : Water in Crisis: A Guide to the World's Fresh Water Resources (Oxford University Press, New York). The key word is "Fresh Water".
 
+J Wolf Actually, I did a post above about the math involved, and the image is reasonably close to accurate. Basically I showed that if the surface of the earth were covered in water, and that water were as deep as the Marianas trench, water would still only account for one half of one percent of the Earth's total volume.
 
Let us not forget one big thing. As we sit here debating a sphere of water, bottling companies are setting up 30-99yr deals with public water sources for rights to privatize our water. The instant a bottling company turns on a tap to fill a bottle, it's no longer ours. It's theirs. It won't sustain us either. Millions of bottles are filled annually. The picture is accurate and the fear real.
 
Good to know something new every day sounds every intresting
 
Exactly, +Kyle Mills. People don't seem to understand the scale. So while it doesn't seem like a lot of water, if we were to divide all of the earth's water evenly among everyone on earth, each person would receive over 47 billion gallons of water. And yet still, water accounts for less than 0.5% of the Earth's total volume.
 
This picture is absolutely wrong!!
 
Are you talking potable drinking water?
 
It is bigger than it looks. With a diameter of 860 miles (1,385 kilometers) the top of the sphere would be about four times (actually 3.7x) as far from the earth as the international space station.
 
Seems like there should be a little more than that....idk Well, i guess... Scary
 
I'm just imagining a ball of water the size of north america
Bill M.
 
Considering part of one of our Oceans is deeper than Mt.Everest is high, I would have never guessed the Earth-to-water ratio could be so huge.
 
Wow, that's a huge drop of water.
 
They need to show a sphere of land... the are showing this water sphere next to the earth in the background that includes the waters
 
+Robert Du Bois Yeah, that ball of water will definitely make a huge difference in the size of the land sphere, not to mention the fact that the picture already accounts for the water being gone, which is why the earth is brown. Keep it up, bro.
 
chucky is the best if you disagree reply back please
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