I wake up, use the bathroom, flush. Brush my teeth. Drink a glass of water. Get dressed. Drive the kids to school. Come home, make myself some coffee.
I'll shower. Do some laundry. Run the dishwasher. Work at the computer. Have a bowl of cereal with some milk. Drink more water. Use the toilet a few more times. Eat lunch.
|Photo by gfrphoto|
Pretty normal, right? Nothing terribly out of the ordinary. Yeah, that's what I thought.
I went over to the H20 Conserve website to check out their water footprint calculator. I was thinking, yeah, I don't use THAT much water. We sometimes let it mellow (don't worry, we flush before anyone comes to visit). We recycle most of our paper and plastic products. We don't buy bottled water. We turn off the water when we brush our teeth and all of that good stuff. Yeah, we've got a leaky faucet in the kids' bathroom, and sometimes Deborah takes a longer than necessary shower, and I frequently make more coffee than I intend to drink, but hey. For the most part we're pretty conscious of our water consumption.
According to the calculator, I use almost 1078 gallons of water A DAY.
Granted, a lot of that is indirect use, primarily due to food. It takes 140 liters of water to produce one cup of coffee. And that's probably not if I use my big mug. Meat products are terrifying. Upwards of a thousand gallons of water for a hamburger. Wow.
So all of that makes me feel pretty guilty. But that's not really that helpful. What can I do to change things?
Well, first, I'm going to try to eat more meatless meals. The amount of water used in meat is really something and that's a pretty easy thing to change. Well, maybe not EASY, but I can do it. We can change to some low flow shower heads. Find out what we need to do to fix the leaky faucet in the kids' bathroom. Just generally be aware of running water that isn't being used for something.
And I'm going to remember that there are a lot of people who don't have access to water. To the tune of 1.1 billion people. There are people who are helping to change that. One group that I absolutely love (LOVE!) that is working to bring an end to extreme poverty is Nuru International. And one of the projects that they do is the Be Hope To Her campaign. In it, students can experience what it's like to be a woman in a country without easy access to water. It's incredibly powerful and life-changing (see the vid below).
BH2O+ 2010 Highlights from Nuru International on Vimeo.
I love what Nuru is doing. I would encourage you to consider making a donation to them. You can make a one time gift or make a recurring donation. I know that regardless of what you give, they will use it well and you will be helping to lift a community out of extreme poverty.
What do/will you do today to help conserve water? Do you donate to any groups that help with clean water? Link 'em up, baby!
This was a part of the Blog Action Day put on every year by change.org. For tons more blogs about this issue, check the link. Thanks!