In order, the steps of the water cycle are evaporation, condensation, sublimation, precipitation, transpiration, runoff and infiltration. Together, all of the steps help regulate the Earth’s water supply and climate.
Water covers roughly 70 percent of the Earth’s surface and is one of the basic elements of nature. It allows organisms to thrive, regulates temperature and drains toxic substances. The water cycle, or the hydrologic cycle, allows water to move through all three of its phases: the gas, liquid and solid phases. It occurs over four spheres: the atmosphere, the lithosphere, the hydrosphere and the biosphere. Throughout the water cycle, rain and storms are created, rocks are turned into soil, and minerals are circulated through the spheres. Overall, the water cycle contributes to every part of biological and chemical life.