On the planet earth, most of the freshwater exists as ice caps and glaciers. Out of the remaining freshwater, the largest proportion:
[UPSC Civil Services Exam – 2013 Prelims]
(a) Is found in atmosphere as moisture and clouds
(b) Is found in freshwater lakes and rivers
(c) Exists as groundwater
(d) Exists as soil moisture
- The Earth’s water can be categorized into two types: saltwater and freshwater. More than 97% of the planet’s water is saline and found in seas and oceans. The remaining water is freshwater, which exists in various forms.
- The highest proportion of freshwater is found in the form of ice caps, glaciers, and snow caps, followed by groundwater, freshwater lakes, atmosphere, rivers, and inland seas or salt lakes in decreasing order.
- The water distribution on Earth can be quantified as oceans containing 97.20%, ice caps and glaciers holding 2.00%, groundwater comprising 0.62%, freshwater lakes and inland seas each contributing 0.01%, atmosphere accounting for 0.001%, and rivers containing 0.0001% of the total water.
Therefore, option (c) is the correct answer.