Water conservation is defined as a practice in which people, companies, and government reduces their water usage, and recycle waste water for purposes, like cleaning, manufacturing, agriculture. This method is efficient and cost-effective to fulfill the growing demand of water.
Need of the Hour
It is important to ensure adequate availability of water for the coming generations. The rate at which we are using freshwater for our daily use, is greater than the one at which nature replaces water in the ecosystem.
If this continues, there will be several places on Earth which will be deprived of sufficient water supply, and that too by a great extent. So, it is important to reduce the rate of water usage and keep it lower than what nature can make up for.
Extensive use of water creates havoc in freshwater habitat. This in turn, disturbs the local wildlife and the migration of freshwater aquatic birds.
It also results in the need to build new dams and other water diversion infrastructure, thus causing more habitat destruction and consumption of energy. So, putting a leash on improper or unnecessary use of water takes care of all such ill-effects on the environment.
- Saving water helps in managing water bills, and also aids in using water for other important purposes.
- It acts as a boon in times of drought, especially for desert regions which have low access to water supply.
- It helps protect the ecosystem and wildlife habitat.
- It helps in conserving the amount of electricity required to heat, pump, and treat water.
- Improved septic performance curbs the risk of ground water contamination, and thus, lakes and streams are less polluted. As such, it has a positive impact in protecting lakes, streams, and safety of drinking water supplies.
How to Conserve Water
Do away with laziness, and do not keep the tap running while you are brushing your teeth. The same goes for while you are shaving. Use a mug or something to rinse your razor. In this way, you can save 3 gallons of water a day.
Do not simply use the washroom blindly, but also be aware of any leaks or crevices which may be causing a great wastage of water everyday. Put some food coloring agent in the tank, and if you see color appearing in the bowl without flushing, then it's time for you to get that leak repaired. If you do, you can save 400 gallons of precious water a month.
Get some unused plastic bottles and fill them with pebbles or rocks. Place them in the toilet tank. These bottles will serve as ballasts for the system, and it will definately ensure less usage of water with each flush.
So, applying a smart technique like this can help an average family save more than 12,000 gallons a year. Apart from this, go in for a one and half gallon ultra-low flush model for your toilet, instead of those which unnecessarily gush large amounts of water out.
Wastage of water for household purposes occur more in the kitchen than anywhere else. People just leave the water running for rinsing. A better alternative is to do the dishes by hand. Fill two vessels with water; one with soapy water and the other with clean water.
Clean the dishes in this way, thereby saving 200 - 500 gallons a month. Also, use the least amount of detergent required. This will help in getting the dishes rinsed with minimal water.
Wash vegetables in a filled sink or vessel, instead of washing them under the faucet. Defrost frozen food items in the microwave and save that amount of running water which you would have used otherwise.
Cleaning cars, verandahs, washable toys, and the like, accounts for healthy hygiene. But cleaning them using a water hose is not recommended. Make a soapy solution in a bucket and a hose with a shut-off nozzle for rinsing. Similarly, places like driveway or sidewalks can be cleaned off debris or leaves using a broom, instead of a hose.
Before disposing off water down the drain, check if you can use the water for watering the plants or a garden, or even cleaning any other stuff. Refrain from the habit of disposing things like tissues, insects, wrappers, and other wastes in the toilet.
Watering the plants during the cooler parts of the day, such as early morning hours or evenings is advised, as then, the rate of evaporation is less, and hence water loss is minimum. Putting chunks of bark, peat moss or gravel around trees and plants also helps slow down evaporation.
If you fancy gardening and at the same time support the importance of saving water, then you can go in for plants which can grow requiring less water. However, this practice is suitable when done in the wet months, as even drought-resistant plants require extra water in the dry months for growing.
Apart from the given methods, you can do a great deal by making others aware about the importance of conserving water. So, the next time you find someone leaving a tap running carelessly, be prompt to close it, and give him a piece of advice.