The average family in the United States uses 400 gallons of water every day. We use it to cook, clean, drink, garden and for many other indoor and outdoor activities. Water is definitely an important resource to us all and is essential to our everyday lives. Unfortunately, to get this water to our homes it takes a lot of energy. Two to three percent of the world’s energy consumption is used to treat and pump water to our homes. And, the percent of energy that we need to treat and pump our water changes from region to region depending on how much the region consumes. In California, for example, about 20 percent of the state’s energy is used to treat and pump its water. Therefore, in order to conserve energy, it is important to conserve our water use within our homes. The EPA estimates that by practicing water conserving techniques, you can reduce your water use by 20–30 percent. By reducing your water use, you will be able to reduce your homes energy use and also be able to save some money and reduce your carbon footprint. And, it’s very simple to reduce your water use!!! Some simple things that you can do include:
- Listen for dripping faucets and running toilets. Fixing a leak can save 300 gallons a month or more.
- Turn off the water while brushing your teeth and save 25 gallons a month.
- Run your clothes washer and dishwasher only when they are full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.
- Find out more ways you can conserve water
Can you think of other things we can all do to conserve water? Be sure to let us know so we can all save energy by practicing water conservation.
About the author: Michelle Gugger graduated from Rutgers University in 2008. She is currently spending a year of service at EPA’s Region 3 Office in Philadelphia, PA as an AmeriCorps VISTA.