The UN's World Water Day, held on 22 March every year since 1993, focuses on the importance of freshwater.
From the UN: "World Water Day 2020 is about water and climate change – and how the two are inextricably linked. By adapting to the water effects of climate change, we will protect health and save lives. And, by using water more efficiently, we will reduce greenhouse gases.
Our key messages for this day are clear:
- We cannot afford to wait. Climate policy makers must put water at the heart of action plans.
- Water can help fight climate change. There are sustainable, affordable and scalable water and sanitation solutions.
- Everyone has a role to play. In our daily lives, there are surprisingly easy steps we can all take to address climate change."
Here are some easy ways to save water at home:
1. Turn off faucets. Bathroom faucets run ~2 gallons per minute.
2. Repurpose water. If you're using a colander to wash fruit & veggies or draining pasta, consider reusing that water in your garden.
3. Buy a high efficiency washing machine. Washing clothes accounts for more than 20% of indoor residential water use.
4. Check your toilet for leaks. Put a few drops of food coloring in your toilet tank. If, without flushing, the coloring begins to appear in the bowl., you have a leak that may be wasting more than 100 gallons of water a day.
5. Take shorter showers. A typical shower uses five to ten gallons of water a minute. Limit your showers to the time it takes to soap up, wash down and rise off.
6. Use your dishwasher instead of handwashing. It may seem counterintuitive, but it turns out washing dishes by hand uses a lot more water than running the dishwasher, even more so if you have a water-conserving model. The EPA estimates an efficient dishwasher uses half as much water, saving close to 5,000 gallons each year. (Tip: Consider using Dropps Dishwasher Detergent Pods!)
7. Buy less. Consumer products are an often-overlooked source of water use, accounting for up to a third of most people’s water footprint. Buying less of everything—from clothing to electronics to household goods—can dramatically decrease your water footprint.
8. Eat less water-intensive foods. Our diets account for roughly half of all the water we use. All food has a water footprint, but some are much larger than others. Eating less beef, one of the most water-intensive foods, is a smart place to start. Shifting away from animal products to a plant-based diet can shrink your water footprint significantly.
9. Use a broom, not a hose, to clean driveways and sidewalks.
10. Store drinking water in the fridge. Running tap water to cool it off for drinking water is wasteful. Instead, store a bottle in the fridge to cool it down.
Visit worldwaterday.org to learn how you can get involved!