Freshwater environments include rivers, lakes, wetlands, streams and underground aquifers. They store and clean the water that’s crucial for people and wildlife. Healthy freshwater environments supply water for drinking, bathing, cooking, growing crops, swimming and even industrial applications.
Did you know that only 2.5 percent of Earth’s water is freshwater? Of this 2.5 percent of freshwater available on the Earth, 68.7 percent is in glaciers and icecaps, 30.1 percent is in groundwater and a mere 1.2 percent is in surface water. Conservation of this scarce resource is critical to sustaining human life.
CALL TO ACTION
In order to conserve our scarce freshwater resources, please do your part and cut down your water use at home. Here are 6 ideas to conserve water at home:
- Turn off faucets. Start saving by breaking a bad habit: Never let faucet water run needlessly as you wash or rinse dishes, wash your hands or face, brush your teeth or shave.
- Fix leaks. A slow drip from a leaking faucet can waste as much as 20 gallons of water a day. A leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons a day.
- Choose low-flow. Since the bathroom is the site of the greatest indoor water use in the house, some smart choices can result in major water savings.
- Toilets, for example, account for nearly 30 percent of an average home’s indoor water consumption. Whereas older toilets use as much as 6 gallons per flush, WaterSense-certified toilets use just 1.28 to 1.6 gallons of water per flush. Dual-flush toilets use even less water.
- Showering accounts for almost 17 percent of household indoor water use. Whereas a regular showerhead uses 2½ gallons a minute, a WaterSense-certified showerhead uses 2 gallons a minute or less while offering the same or better shower performance.
- Shorten your showers. Time your showers with your phone or kitchen timer. Aim for five minutes or less.
- Water your garden by hand. Households that manually water with a hose typically use 33 percent less water outdoors than those that use an automatic irrigation system.
- Capture rainwater. A rain barrel catches roof water from gutters and downspouts and stores rainwater for use in the garden.