Friday, September 23, 2011

Conserve Water in Everyday Situations

 This is part of my series: 20 Ways to Go Green that Make a DifferenceThis series discusses practical ways we can go green in our lives, that will have a measurable effect on the environment.  This is an alternative to the many lists that offer 100+ suggestions, many of which are not easily applied to our lives or the impact is minimal.

Conservation of resources is one of the tenets of going green.  Society has made possible many luxuries that are quite affordable, but can have far-reaching costs for the environment and our future.  Running water is taken for granted by many, as it is nearly universal and affordable.  However, wasting this water is not green and should be avoided, no matter what.  Some of the earlier tips including running full loads will save both electricity and water.

 One simple way that I try to employ and think will be incredibly easy to implement in your lives is taking shorter and less frequent showers.  I am not advocating any stop bathing completely and become a dirty hippy, but certainly there are ways to shorten your showers so you can save valuable water.  Showers use gallons and gallons of water, and at minimum 25% of the water used is probably wasted.  There are water conserving shower-heads available as well, for those who want to take the next step.

Another pet peeve of mine is when people leave the water running while brushing their teeth.  This is completely unnecessary and pure laziness.  Simply turn of the water while you are brushing, and turn it on and off to rinse off.  This also applies to washing dishes by hand, turn off the stream while you are scrubbing!

I truly believe that water will and should become much more expensive in the next years.  Whether this is from a "green tax" imposed by governments, which would go to providing for other green pursuits, or if it is due to dwindling resources.  Like the bottle deposit, there should be a high cost for wasting water, which will cause people to reconsider their water usage.  Punishment, especially financial, works a lot better than rewards.  The people who decide to continue wasting should suffer a much larger penalty and some of those dollars diverted to other ways of going green.

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