Water is a molecular compound formed from the elements oxygen and hydrogen. It is the most abundant molecule on Earth and is essential to life on the planet.
The Earth's surface is 71 percent water. Over 96 percent of all water on Earth is found in seas and oceans, with the remaining amount contained in groundwater, glaciers, ice caps, smaller bodies of water, clouds and precipitation. There is a direct link between a country's access to safe water and its gross domestic product. Because it acts as a solvent in cleaning solutions and allows industrial cooling and transportation, water is an important facet of the world economy.