Whether we realize it or not, water plays a major role in our lives. Think about your personal morning routine. Maybe it includes taking a shower, brushing your teeth, or preparing an omelet for breakfast. All of these activities revolve around water. We use water constantly. But are we using our water wisely? By taking small steps to reduce, reuse, and recycle our water, we can cut down on water waste to promote sustainable living and a healthier environment.
Why worry about water waste?
Water is the lifeblood of our earth. Everything—from plants to animals to humans—relies on water to survive. Even the food we eat needs water to be produced. The overuse of fresh water in the home means less water for agriculture.
Water is necessary to produce the fruits and vegetables that we all love. Less water not only reduces crop yields but can hurt farmers as well. Water is for everyone and for every living thing. Mindless water use is wasteful water use.
Money Down the Drain
One major source of water waste in the home is leaky faucets. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, families waste 9,400 gallons of water from household leaks alone. That amount is equivalent to doing 300 loads of laundry! Imagine the water (and money) you could save by tightening your faucets.
Turn off the water while brushing your teeth
Brushing your teeth is a staple routine, usually the first thing you do in the morning and the last thing you do at night. Most people brush twice a day for about three minutes—and many leave the water running while brushing. Did you know that a bathroom water faucet releases an average of 2.2 gallons of water per minute? That’s 13.2 gallons of water a day while you brush! By turning off the water when it's not in use, you'll save gallons of water and cut down on the water bill.
Water, Wash, Repeat
Enjoying a pasta dinner? When straining your pasta, put a seperate bowl underneath the strainer to catch the water. From there, you can use the cooled pasta water to hydrate plants around your home.
The same method can be applied when cleaning fruits and vegetables. All you need to do is place a large bowl underneath the area where you wash your produce, and the bowl will do the rest!
Water-Wise Car Wash
For some, keeping your car clean is a priority. If that's you, try going to a car wash that reuses their water!
How does it work you ask? Once the water is used, it travels through drains and is captured in a pit. From there it is filtered and separates any oil, dirt, and chemicals from the reused water. If you like giving your car a good, old-fashioned hand wash in the driveway, consider this: while hand washing your car might save you some money, it can also introduce chemicals into the environment through the drain/sewage system.
Water-wise car washes are committed to using the least amount of water possible to make your car shine. They also divert chemical run-off, and many use earth-conscious products.
Expanding deserts are a consequence of water shortages.
As the saying goes, when it rains, it pours—so collect it and cut down on your water bills! By collecting rainwater in rain barrels, you can distribute that water to care for your lawn, garden, and even wash your pets. This practice also prevents erosion by diverting rainfall from areas prone to deterioration. In places where land erosion is a concern, rain barrels prevent and protect.
Storing water for use during dry seasons is important, especially in farming communities. This is why Plant With Purpose helps partners invest in cisterns, particularly in Haiti and Mexico.
Create a Rain Garden
A rain garden is a depressed area of land that grows native plants. These gardens help eliminate water runoff and pollutants. They also provide a habitat for wildlife like songbirds and butterflies. Rain gardens are cost effective and can be customized to your preferences. If you are unsure of what to plant, use this website as a guide to get the most benefit from your garden.
Water is one of Earth’s most precious resources, essential to all living things to survive. Let’s think about our water waste and lead the way for a water-wise future!
Interested in helping people access clean water while also planting life-giving trees? Make a donation! To be part of this change on a monthly basis, consider becoming a Purpose Partner!