As an Eastern proverb goes, ‘the ocean is made of tiny drops of water.’ Metaphysical underpinnings aside, this saying rings true on a very pragmatic level.
Many of us –in an age of easy access to resources– end up taking our natural resources for granted, without realizing that they are not as abundant as we think they are. Tiny droplets of water are wasted every day. But wasted water comes with a cost.
The following are some of the ways in which you may be wasting water daily without being aware of it. Hopefully, being aware could lead you to change your habit and conserve water for a more sustainable world.
Keeping the tap on when not in use
East or West, many people all over the world, are guilty of leaving the tap on while brushing or while cleaning utensils. Such wastage might seem just foolhardy and frivolous, but imagine the accumulative effect of billions of people all over the world running their taps on while brushing.
It doesn’t take much to change such habits. All you need to do is to tell yourself to shut the tap off while you have your brush in your teeth, or your hands cleaning the dishes. Perhaps, as a positive side effect, you might even develop a zen-like meditative awareness while carrying out these otherwise mundane tasks!
Showers might be a wonderful experience, giving you the effect of rain pouring all over your skin. A quick shower is a fair deal, but a long, relaxing shower can lead to a lot of wastage. Sure, feeling the rain on your skin feels great every once in a while, but not at the cost of environmental wastage.
Using a bucket for your bath allows you to keep the water you use in check and will get you into the habit of using only as much water as you really need.
And in case you are the kind that likes their bath time to be a lavish experience, there’s always the option of using a bathtub.
Using bucket-loads of water for very few clothes
Instead of regularly washing a few clothes, it’s better to delay doing the laundry until you accumulate a full load of washing. This is because the machine will use the same amount of water for a partial load as it does for a considerable load.
Just like laundry, it is advisable to use the dishwasher once you have a full load of utensils, instead of using it every other day.
This might come as a surprise for some, but in the post-global warming era, we need to think of wastage in terms of all resources concerned in the relevant cycle. In this scenario, when you’re throwing away food, you’re also wasting all the gallons of water used to grow it, as well as all the water used for rearing the animals whose meat you’re frivolously throwing away!
Furthermore, such wastage is also contributing to the buildup of additional greenhouse gases when the wasted food ends up in the landfill to be burnt.
So from now on, kindly pledge to buy or cook only as much as you can consume.
Using a hose to wash your car
Same logic as with the shower. Solution? Again, use buckets and mugs instead! Old school never goes out of school sometimes, especially when it comes to sustainable practices.
Overwatering the lawn
You might be overwatering your lawn, and using more water for your grass and your plants than needed. You can, again, use buckets when it comes to watering your plants, or could use a watering can with tiny holes on top of it. And as for watering the grass, it’s a good idea to install sprinklers and watchfully water your lawn from time to time.
Avoiding repairs for leaky pipes
A lot of water might be getting wasted due to unchecked leaks in pipes.
Do you hear your tap dripping at night? Stop getting used to it, and do something about it! Get all your pipes checked and repaired, and install new ones if necessary. It is advisable to get some help from the plumbing professionals for the same. This will not only save you on your water bills in the long run but might even improve your sleep!