Watching Our Water Ways

Environmental reporter Christopher Dunagan discusses the challenges of protecting Puget Sound and all things water-related.
Subscribe to RSS

EPA asks: How do you conserve water?

December 1st, 2008 by cdunagan

The Environmental Protection Agency runs a blog called Greenversations. This week, the question being asked is: How do you conserve water?

Posted this morning, the question already has generated responses from 43 people. Some of the ideas are old hat among water conservers — such as turning off the tap while brushing your teeth.

A few responses were quite detailed and show years of working on the goal of saving water. For example, here’s the one from Marianna:

We adhere to the toilet motto “If it’s yellow let it mellow, if it’s brown flush it down”.
Until hot water comes out of the tap we save the cold water to flush the toilets with.
I use gray water generated in the kitchen during the growing season to water my gardens.
We don’t wash our cars!
We reduce our yard irrigation to the bare minimum to keep the grass alive.
I’ve converted a good part of the lawn to gardens that require a lot less water.
I’ve put nearly all of my vegetable & flower gardens on drip irrigation.
I save scarce rainwater that runs off of the roof by installing gutters and putting several rain barrels in place.

To sum: to us water is a precious, not-to-be-wasted resource, just like gasoline or firewood!

I’m sure readers of this blog have some good ideas. Post them on the EPA’s blog and add them as a comment here if you would.

By the way, one idea is to fix leaky pipes, both in your home and in your city’s water system. Each day, 6 billion gallons of clean, treated drinking water disappears — mostly due to old, leaky pipes and mains, according to a report from the American Society of Civil Engineers. That’s “enough water to serve the population of a state the size of California.”

See a story in the Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce about acoustic technology used to identify leaks before they occur. Reducing leaks in water mains is one of the requirements of Washington’s Municipal Water Law.

Tags: ,

Email This Post Email This Post Print This Post Print This Post

4 Responses to “EPA asks: How do you conserve water?”

  1. Bill Dewey Says:

    Waterless urinals provide a huge water savings. I don’t understand why there are not rules mandating their use or incentives to encourage more of them. There is a savings of 15,000 – 40,000 gallons per year with each waterless urinal installed. In 2006 developers proposed using them in Philadelphia’s Comcast Center high rise for a savings of 1.6 millions gallons of water per year.

  2. Andrea Says:

    I agree, Waterless Urinals should be mandatory, especially in public buildings. Also, if you are serious about saving water, want a toilet that really works and is affordable, I would highly recommend a Caroma Dual Flush toilet. Caroma toilets offer a patented dual flush technology consisting of a 0.8 Gal flush for liquid waste and a 1.6 Gal flush for solids. Caroma, an Australian company set the standard by giving the world its first successful two button dual flush system in the nineteen eighties and has since perfected the technology. Also, with a full 3.5″ trapway, these toilets virtually never clog. All of Caroma’s toilets are on the list of WaterSense labeled HET’s http://www.epa.gov/watersense/pp/find_het.htm and also qualify for several rebate programs currently available as well as LEED points. Please go to http://www.caromausa.com for more detailed information or visit http://www.ecotransitions.com/howto.asp to see why they actually work. Best regards, Andrea Paulinelli

  3. Sharon O'Hara Says:

    Investigate before buying…make sure the toilet does the job.

    January 2008…
    Toilets: Comfortable and efficient

    Trends include more comfort-height models, which raise the rim from the usual 14 inches to as much as 17 inches above the floor. The added height makes getting on and off easier, especially for aging boomers, who have helped boost sales. But their added comfort is likely to appeal to younger buyers, too.

    Dual-flush requires discretion. Dual-flush models we tested did a fine job of thoroughly removing liquid waste when we used their optional water-saving, 0.8-gallon mode. But none of these toilets are meant for solid waste in that mode.”
    consumerreports.com
    Sharon O’Hara

  4. Sharon O'Hara Says:

    Corrected URL:
    http://www.consumerreports.org

Leave a Reply

Before you post, please complete the prompt below.

Please enter the word MILK here:

Notify me via email of follow-up comments (without commenting):

Available on Kindle

Subscribe2

Follow WaterWatching on Twitter

Food for thought

"In the end, we will conserve only what we love, we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught."Baba Dioum, Senegalese conservationist

Archives

Categories