Over the last several months there have been many calls to action with regards to reducing our consumption of fresh water. Reservoirs are down to half or quarter capacity and even worse, our water tables are drying up.
As a society we spend a lot of time talking about policy, creating unenforced layers of rules, but little to no time focused on taking action. The city where I live, for example, implemented mandatory water restrictions which include limits to the number of days residents can water their lawns as well as how quickly leaky sprinklers need to be repaired. Meanwhile, every city building and park still has beautifully maintained and watered lawns.
This isn’t a policy issue, this is a people issue. True positive change will be from adjusting our behaviors and habits not adding new policies and procedures. I wrote recently about installing a $14 shower head that will reduce your shower water flow by 40%. This cheap and easy product took less than a minute to install and comes with instant savings.
Another quick, easy and incredibly cheap improvement is replacing standard sink aerators with low flow aerators. Aerators restrict, or meter the flow of water from of a faucet. I say meter because you can choose what level of flow you want. I removed the aerator from my bathroom sink and was shocked to see it rated at 2.2 gallons per minute! My shower head is rated at 1.5 GPM and toilet at 1.6 gallons per flush, so it came at a surprise to realize that that my largest water offender was my bathroom sink!
I quickly took to the web and found several affordable alternatives. For $11.60 delivered I ordered a 6-pack of 0.5 GPM faucet aerators. That’s a water flow reduction of 77%!
Habits and behaviors—it’s that simple. If we all took these tiny steps the savings would add up quickly.
Learn more at www.upcyclela.org.