It is fair to say that many people in the UK take for granted the fact that we have almost constant access to clean water.
Furthermore, the relative cost in relation to its usefulness is so small, especially in comparison to other utilities such as gas and electricity.
However, just because it is free and cheap it does not mean that water should be wasted. That is why each year Water Saving Week is run in the UK.
Organised by Waterwise, the leading authority on water efficiency, and WaterSafe, which operates a national register of approved plumbers, this year’s Water Saving Week takes place from March 20 to 24, and will raise awareness about how easy it is for everyone to use water wisely.
To help your household reduce unnecessary water wastage and conserve this natural resource, the two organisations have come together to provide some useful hints and tips for Water Saving Week and beyond.
Be seasonal with your eating
By eating foods that are in season, you can help reduce the amount of water used by the agricultural industry - seasonal food is produced in harmony with the weather and therefore doesn’t require irrigation, which uses even more water.
Water-efficient devices and equipment
A water meter is estimated to reduce water usage in the home by 12 per cent and water companies install these for free while providing water-saving kits. They can also offer water efficiency home audits and sometimes free retrofitting of water-saving devices too - visit your water company’s website or call them for more information.
Toothpaste works better when it’s dry - you only need to rinse at the end. Try with a glass of water rather than a running tap.
Get a good old fashioned razor mug and clean your razor with just 250ml each time.
Food waste = water waste
Globally we use 200,000,000 litres of water a second to produce food. Cut your food waste to help conserve the earth’s water.
Use a shower timer
For every minute you shorten your shower by, you could save up to seven to eight litres of water, depending on the power (flow-rate) of your shower. A good way to start is with a shower timer which can show you how long you spend in the shower and hopefully give you an incentive to cut your shower time. You can also save water by turning your shower off whilst you’re soaping or shampooing.
Reheat cold drinks
If you let your tea or coffee go cold, reheat it in the microwave - this produces five times less carbon and saves about a quarter of a litre each time than if you remake it.
Raining cats and dogs?
When it’s dry, wash your pets on the lawn. When it’s wet, use a pet shower attachment with a trigger nozzle.
Keep your showers under four minutes if possible. Installing a water efficient shower head, water efficient taps and a dual flush can also contribute to saving water.
Don’t use a running tap to wash dishes or vegetables; use a washing up bowl instead, or catch the water in a bucket to use on your garden. Boiling more water than you use wastes water and energy.
Approximately half of the UK population own a dishwasher. Wait until your dishwasher or washing machine is full before using it. When you buy new appliances, make sure they are rated AA for efficiency. It will save you money in the long run.