As part of Blog Action Day‘s theme of Water I wanted to relay 5 tips on how my family conserves water like an outdoorsman.
Over the years I’ve done my fair share of backpacking and trekking in areas where water is not easily accessible or plentiful. In such situations its essential to conserve water. With so many backcountry trips under my belt, exposure to cultures that lack modern amenities & water access, as well as living through severe droughts here in California I’ve come to appreciate how precious a drop of water can be and permanently adopted water conservation efforts. Here are a few outdoorsman water conservation tips I’ve adopted here at home…
- Never dump drinking water down the drain. Either save it to consume later, poor it into your pets water dish or use it to water your plants.
- Toilet water is easily conserved by flushing only when necessary. Back in college during a severe California drought the common saying was, “If its yellow mellow; if its brown flush it down.” Having the family flush once in the morning versus through out the evening is a quick way to save water.Bonus Tip: Upgrade your toilet to a low-flow version and/or fill a bag with water and hang it in the tank of your toilet. The volume of the bag will reduce the total volume of water that fills the tank around it, saving gallons upon gallons of water over the year.
- Don’t brush your teeth with the water running. Fill a glass with water and use that to wet your toothbrush and rinse. The glass of water in this case is a luxury above and beyond what I usually do in the backcountry where I’ll often go waterless when brushing my teeth. The same is true with shaving… if you’re manly enough to dry shave.
- Shower less frequently. I’m not condoning going for days or weeks with out showering, particularly if you have to go into the office, but sometimes skipping a day on the weekend isn’t the end of the world. See how much water you use in a shower and you’ll quickly realize how much water you can save by skipping a shower in a consistent fashion throughout the year.
- No time in the backcountry is complete without wearing clothing more than once. That might not be ideal back at home, but it can draw out the need to do laundry. If that’s not workable at least double up your loads of laundry and/or use a high efficiency washer. My wife and I just recently bought a high efficiency washer and we’ve been happy to see our water usage decrease.
Calculate your water consumption at home – USGS
[tags]Blog Action Day, water, nature, fine art, photography[/tags]