As the old saying goes, “water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink.” Even though the Earth has oceans and seas of water, most of it isn’t fit for human consumption. In fact, only 2.5 percent is actually drinkable. That’s a pretty slim number considering there are currently over seven billion people on the planet. This is why we need to save as much water as possible.
Saving water starts at home. While it sounds like a cliche, the average household uses around 250 litres per day. That comes up to over 7500 litres per month and is quite a bit of water. Not all of it is used as a large portion heads directly down the drain. Even looking at the entire water cycle, you’ll see that drinkable water is lost due to a number of factors.
If you want to save water at home then consider these tips.
Take shorter showers and baths
Taking a shower is a great way to get your creative juices flowing and to think over the events from the past day. The problem is those thoughts can take time and while you’re standing around, litre upon litre of water is literally being flushed down the drain. Sure, a piping hot shower is a great way to relax, but is it worthwhile if we end up having no water to drink?
Instead, take shorter showers and time yourself so that you can be sure it’s under two minutes. Basically, you’ll be hopping in and out while washing all of your bits that need to be cleaned. While you may miss your reflective moments, there are other ways to think about the day.
If you have a shower installed, try to completely cut out bathing. They use an incredible amount of water. Sure, a bath filled to the brim with bubbles is fun, but that water should rather be used for more pressing tasks. Some couples enjoy having a bath together so try work that into your cleaning routine. You can save water and have a romantic time.
Water shouldn’t be a measurement of wealth
There is a strange but popular theory that if water becomes scarce or expensive, people will just buy more. Unfortunately, that’s not how water works and will lead to a lot of issues if it ever became a reality. After all, if this were true, wouldn’t more countries have copious supplies of water and be trading it like their other commodities?
Cut out the idea that water makes you look important, and rather save it for everyone else to use. Your car doesn’t need to be washed each and every weekend, but if you’re desperate there are waterless car washes that can help you out.
And then there is the case of bottled water. It’s a great way to have access to clean, drinkable water. The problem is the amount of bottle water that is wasted, such as throwing away half-finished bottles. If you offer your guests spring water, then get a five litre container and pour the required amount into a glass from consumption.
Better irrigation systems
Everything needs water to survive and the same can be said for your plants. Though, unlike us humans, plants don’t need water every single day to survive. After all, there’s a good chance they’ll still be around long after you have gone. These organisms have adapted to different rainfall and seasons over millions of years and will survive not looking pristine for next week’s braai.
If you really feel the need to water your plants, make sure it’s done at night when the air and ground are cooler. This will allow for less water to evaporate and be wasted. Try to water your plants and grass with collected rainwater in order to not use drinkable water.
Another excellent way to save water, though one that will set you out of pocket, is to install water tanks. These can be hooked up to the out take of different appliances – like washing machines – and store it for use in non-potable situations, such as flushing a toilet. You can also rig up devices to capture rainwater to be stored in the tanks. By filtering out any bacteria or undesirable chemicals, it can be used for drinking or garden irrigation.
There is an incredible amount of ways to save water that won’t require you spending money. All you need to do is look at your current expenditure and see where the water is being used the most.