Abstract Water plays a role in the thermodynamics of dilute aqueous solutions that is unusual in two ways. First, knowledge of hydration equilibrium constants of species is not required in calculations of thermodynamic properties of biochemical reactants and reactions at specified pH. Second, since solvent provides an essentially infinite source of oxygen atoms in a reaction system where water is a reactant, oxygen atoms are not conserved in the reaction system in dilute aqueous solutions. This is related to the fact that H2O is omitted in equilibrium expressions for dilute aqueous solutions. Calculations of the standard transformed Gibbs energies of formation of total carbon dioxide and total ammonia at specified pH are discussed, and the average bindings of hydrogen ions by these reactants are calculated by differentiation. Since both of these reactants are involved in the urease reaction, the apparent equilibrium constants and changes in the numbers of hydrogen ions bound are calculated for this reaction as functions of pH.