Circle your calendar for March 22, which is when we pause to consider the global water crisis that exists on our planet. In a bid to draw awareness and share best practices as we look towards solutions to water scarcity, the United Nations established World Water Day in 1993. Each year, they develop a theme to highlight different aspects of the crisis.
Awareness is particularly important because each and every person has a role to play in water conservation. If we continue on the same path, the world’s fresh water supply will dwindle, and the problem will get worse. Clean water is vital to health and to prosperity. The World Economic Forum has identified the water crisis as the #1 global risk because of the amount of devastation that could happen without clean water.
Your Plumbing and Conserving Water
You count on your plumbing for many conveniences in your life, but it can be a major source of water wastage if you aren’t proactive in fixing leaks. According to the EPA, the average household with leaks wastes more than 10,000 gallons of water in a year. That’s like doing 270 loads of laundry! 10 percent of American homes have leaks that waste upwards of 90 gallons a day. What can you do about it?
Get in the habit of looking for leaks. Leaks are easily and inexpensively fixed. Leaky faucets often only need a tightening with a wrench. Putting a gasket or an aerator inside the faucet can help regulate water flow.
Toilet leaks are harder to identify but are very common. It’s often just a faulty flapper. To test for leaks, drop food coloring in your toilet tank and let sit for 10-15 minutes. If the color has seeped into the bowl, then you are dealing with a leak.
Fast Facts About the Crisis
In less developed countries, many schools and healthcare facilities don’t have a safe water source. This is a health disaster. It is said that as much as 80 percent of illnesses are caused by contaminated water. 1 out of 5 deaths worldwide are linked back to unsafe water.
Sanitation is a major problem as well. Without toilets in schools, many girls drop out when they reach puberty, limiting education and opportunities later in life. Rural areas are most impacted by lack of water and sanitation, and Sub-Saharan African is the hardest hit region, where 319 million people don’t have access to fresh water.
Tips to Reduce Your Water Use
Ready to reduce? Here is how you can save water at home (and a bonus- saving water saves you money too).
Only run your dishwasher and washing machine when they are full. Take showers not baths. When you are waiting for the shower to heat up, collect the water in a bucket. You can use it to flush your toilet or to water your garden.
When you are brushing your teeth, switch off the tap.
When you are preparing fruits and veggies, don’t run them under the tap. Instead fill a basin with water and submerge your produce.
Think you might have a leak? We can take care of it today. Call us at (415)-441-2255 for help in San Francisco, CA.