- This article was contributed by Ashley Broussard, intern with the Kane County Division of Environmental and Water Resources.
You probably know that 97 percent of the water on Earth is saltwater. But what you might not realize is that 2 percent is frozen in glaciers.
This means that we have only 1 percent left for drinking and everyday use. With a growing population, it is more important than ever that we try to conserve water.
If you’re like me, chances are you’re a water waster without even realizing it. By checking different areas of your life, you can save thousands of gallons of water a year.
Area 1 — Your Bathroom
- Is your toilet silently leaking? According to American Water Works Association, 13.7 percent of water used actually isn’t used for any purpose — it comes from leaks. Visit the Kane County Division of Environmental and Water Resources to pick up a free dye test to check your toilet for leaks.
- Turn off the sink when not in use. This goes for brushing your teeth or washing your face. These small adjustments can add up big savings!
- Swap out old toilets and showerheads. If your toilet is older, you could be using three or more gallons of water with every flush. By making a swap to a more efficient toilet, you save over 3,000 gallons in a year. Look for the WaterSense label to ensure your swap is more efficient. You may even be eligible for a rebate for making the swap!
- Make the switch to showers. Your bathtub can hold from 36 to more than 70 gallons of water. The typical shower only uses 10 to 15 gallons.
Area 2 — Your Diet
- Are you a fan of meat? If so, you might want to think about cutting back. A plant-based diet uses significantly less water to produce food than one containing meat. Meatless Mondays, anyone?
- Place a water pitcher in the fridge for cold water rather than leaving the tap running until the water is cool.
Area 3 — Your Garden
- Less is more. More often than not, plants die from over watering — not under watering. Try cutting back on how much and how often you water your plants.
- Want to take it a step further? Try harvesting rain water.
Area 4 — Your Appliances
- Dishwashers and laundry machines can be big water wasters when used unnecessarily. Avoid washing partial loads, and run only full loads.
- Make the switch to an Energy Star certified appliance. With this seal, you can be assured your appliance will save energy and water.
By making a swap, just think of all of the gallons of water you could save. Through water conservation, you’re not only saving the planet, but your wallet as well.
Find more water conservation resources at Clean Water for Kane.