Today, March 22nd, is World Water Day. In fact, today is the 25th annual World Water Day organised by the UN to focus on the importance of water and the need to preserve it. We all know that water is important to a healthy lifestyle, but we all also know that it’s not readily available to everyone everywhere.
To make our mark on World Water Day, here are a few water saving tips that can be used in any business. Will you be trying to incorporate some of these into yours?
Educate your Staff
Water saving habits, like many other habits, can start at home and then the workplace. Get your staff on board with saving water and hopefully, they’ll bring their ideas, habits and campaigns into the office.
Hold a short meeting with your staff to discuss the importance of water for both us and those far away. Did you know that 1 in 9 people worldwide lacks access to safe water? More people have a mobile phone than have access to a toilet. These facts might just spur your staff into action.
What about starting a water-saving competition? You can calculate your water footprint online easily, for example here and here. Why not have a water saving month at work? Get everyone to calculate their water footprints at the start of the month, and again at the end of the month. The biggest reduction wins a prize!
To make sure these good habits are continued in the workplace, draw up a water saving policy for the office. Consider designing some posters, infographics, or reminder cards that can be distributed to your staff. You never know – being a water-efficient company might bring you new business, too!
Tackle the Bathroom
Did you know that the toilet uses over 30% of workplace water? It’s a big portion of daily water usage everywhere, so you should definitely be looking at ways to minimise bathroom impact.
Dual flush toilets are the easiest way to save on water – not every trip to the bathroom requires litres and litres of water for a single flush. Bonus points – if you get a new toilet with dual flush, most new toilets can be far more economical. Efficient dual flush toilets can use as little as 6 litres on a full flush, which is less than half of what a traditional toilet uses.
You should regularly check your work toilets for leaks, too. A leaky faucet can waste hundreds of litres of water a year. On average, a faucet that drips ones a minute for a year would waste 128 litres of water. That’s over a third of a litre a day!
Want more water saving on your taps? Tap aerators save water in bathrooms and kitchens by regulating water flow without affecting water pressure. You can save up to 50% more water each time you use an aerated tap, and they’re affordable too. Better yet, most people can’t tell the difference!
The Kitchen Conundrum
As within the bathroom, you should check your kitchen taps regularly for leaks, drips, and tap aerator opportunities.
Water efficient dishwashers, like tap aerators and efficient toilets, can save up to 50% more water than an old-style dishwasher. You don’t need to, excuse the pun, splash out on a new machine though. Simply only washing when the dishwasher is full and scraping pots and pans instead of rinsing them beforehand, can save on bills and water waste.
Drink it Up
It’s recommended that to maintain a healthy lifestyle, we drink about 6-8 glasses of water a day. That’s about a litre to a litre and a half, but this shouldn’t really be compromised on. Instead, think about how drinking water can be more efficient in the workplace.
Many people let taps run cold before they put their glass or bottle under, and those little bits of water pre-filling can add up very quickly. Invest in a water machine that pumps out chilled water right away and the savings will happen right away. A good water machine will have a small dispenser to avoid splashing and lost water too.
Eat it Up, Too!
Agricultural products account for about 73% of the world’s total water footprint. Only 250 litres of water is needed to produce 1kg of wheat compared to 25,000 litres of water needed to produce 1kg of meat. By taking part in initiatives such as Meat Free Monday, everyone in a company can save over 3,000 litres of water a week!
It’s not just water you can save by cutting out a bit of meat – meat-free days help towards avoiding excessive CO2 production, reducing methane production and it helps avoids the pollution of natural water areas and wildlife habitats.
Charity Starts at Home…
But don’t forget about those overseas. Everything we do in our workplaces and homes to reduce water is one step, but there are still too many people in the world with no access to clean water.
There are hundreds of charities dedicated to providing clean and safe water access to people around the world that don’t currently have it. Consider donating, fundraising and getting involved with one or two to make an even bigger impact.
You can find a whole lot more online with a simple ‘Water Charities’ search.
This World Water Day, start planning for how you’ll make 2018 a better year. For yourself, for your colleagues, for your workplace and for your world. Leave a comment below about how you save water in your workplace.