By Funmi Ajumobi
WATER, they say is life and the best drink on earth. Water is so precious that no matter the drink you consume, none can give you satisfaction as water. With more and more areas struggling with droughts, conserving water is more important than ever, even if you’re not living in a drought-stricken region.
Somehow people still believe that there is ample water on Earth and moreover the water they waste will be recycled eventually, hence wasting water is no crime. Those people do not realize that though 97 per cent of the earth is covered with water, unfortunately that water is not drinkable. Only three per cent water on Earth is fresh-water and good for consumption. Out of this three per cent, 70 per cent is in the form of glaciers and icecaps and hence cannot be reached. The remaining water that is underground is mere 0.3 per cent of total fresh water.
This is the water we get in our homes and use for various purposes from brushing our teeth to drinking to washing our cars. No wonder Samuel Tailor Coleridge in one of his poems ‘The Rime of the Ancient Marine’ said, “Water, water, everywhere, And all the boards did shrink; Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink”. There is water everywhere but how much of it is drinkable?
Today, there are over 663 million people living without safe water supply close to home, spending countless hours queueing or trekking to distant sources, and coping with the health impacts of using contaminated water. With less than one percent of earth’s water suitable for human use, according to research, the World Health Organization estimates that people in developing countries, primarily women and children spend a combined 200 million hours daily carrying water for household use.
Today marks another World Water Day, with the theme; “why waste water”? As homemakers, you have a responsibility to join the crusade with your household to conserve water aligning with the Sustainable Development Goals, launched in 2015 which include a target to ensure everyone has access to safe water by 2030, making water a key issue in the fight to eradicate extreme poverty.
- Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth. Water comes out of the average faucet at 2.5 gallons per minute. Don’t let all that water go down the drain while you brush! Turn off the faucet after wetting your brush, and leave it off until it’s time to rinse.
- Fix your leaks. Hire a plumber. Fixing leaky faucets can mean big water savings. Check all water taps, hoses, and hose connections (even those that connect to dishwashers and washing machines) for leaks.
- Flush with less. Older toilets use a lot of water. You can reduce your usage by buying new toilets system that use less water.
- Hand-washing a lot of dishes? Fill up your sink with water, instead of letting it run the whole time that you’re scrubbing.
- Don’t run water continuously when washing vegetables or doing dishes.
- Check the garden hose too – it should be turned off at the faucet, not just at the nozzle.
The benefits of conserving water are numerous because it will reduce electricity since the rate at which you pump water will reduce. For many, money budgeted on petrol will also reduce.
On long term benefit, there will be more water for others to use and more people benefit from it as long as they have pipe in their homes because the gallons of water pump everyday will serve many homes.