WATER IN THE HOME
The amount of water that each of us uses has increased significantly over the last 25 years. Even though it often seems to rain in England, south east England actually has less water per head than parts of Italy and Spain.
Climate change could make water a more precious resource. In the south east there are likely to be drier summers. Saving water will become even more important. When water becomes scarce it can also damage the natural environment. For example, low river flows make it more difficult for fish to breathe and breeding sites for wildlife can be lost.
Although summers may become drier, heavy rainfall and wetter winters could mean that there is a greater chance of flooding, and not just from rivers or streams. There are steps that we can all take to be prepared for flooding. The Environment Agency website contains some very useful advice on this.
There is a direct link between the water that we use and carbon emissions. The energy used annually to pump, treat and heat the water in the average family’s home, produces the carbon equivalent of a return flight from London to New York; so reducing water consumption will directly reduce energy consumption
Some tips for saving water:
- put a “displacement device”, such as a Hippo Bag in the toilet cistern (but not in a low flush toilet)
- take a shower rather than a bath (though be careful how long you shower if you have a power shower as these use a lot of water)
- do not leave taps running when brushing your teeth or cleaning vegetables
- try to use a full load in washing machines or dishwashers
- in the garden install a water butt and use a mulch of bark or leaves to reduce water loss