9 August 2022
Global Action Plan, the national environmental organisation based in Ballymun, is appealing to the public to save water, by stopping watering their lawns and cutting their showers short.
The solution-focused charity, which gives practical guidance to the Irish public to encourage sustainable behaviour in everyday life, notes that a 10-minute power shower uses 250 litres of water. By reducing shower times to 4 minutes you can save approx. 150 litres of water.
Hans Zomer, CEO of Global Action Plan, said:
“As Ireland is experiencing warmer summers and more irregular rainfall patterns due to climate change, we are once again being confronted with water shortages. Irish Water has indicated that water supplies in more than 60 locations are under pressure and it is imposing night-time restrictions in 13 areas. In many other areas water levels are lower than needed to provide certainty of supply.”
“We welcome Irish Water’s call to be conscious of water conservation and in particular to avoid watering gardens. Water is precious and our behaviour needs to reflect that fact.”
“At the end of this month, the world’s experts on drinking water will meet in Stockholm for the annual World Water Week conference. The issue of water conservation will take centre stage, and experts will provide recommendations on how we can show the value of water, and make better decisions when it comes to managing this vital resource.
Very often water wastage is down to everyday behaviour that can be easily changed without much time and effort. Our organisation aims to encourage people to make small shifts to become more sustainable. It is up to each individual to change how, when and why they consume water. And that is why we have decided to publish our tips on how people can reduce their water use.”Hans Zomer – CEO of Global Action Plan
World Water Week 2022, the leading global conference on water issues, is taking place in Sweden, from 23 August to 1 September. This year’s World Water Week will focus on
the unprecedented pressure on the world’s freshwater resources; pressure linked to fast-rising temperatures, growing populations and consumption patterns.
Ahead of World Water Week, the environmental organisation has compiled some easy tips for saving water.
Global Action Plan Ireland is also encouraging people to share their own tips on the organisation’s Facebook and Instagram page throughout World Water Week. #lessismore #wateryoudoing
Tips for Being More Water Wise At Home or at Work
1) Use 1 less flush a day.
The population of Ireland is approximately 5.1 million people. On average, we each flush the toilet up to eight times a day. Our toilet habits mean that between us all we flush on average 35-40 million litres per flush. That’s a lot of water. Top tip? Reduce the amount of times you flush. Aim for 5 flushes a day.
2) Put a brick in it.
Another loo water saving tip. Put a bottle
in the toilet cistern. A full bottle of water or a brick in a toilet can save up to 1,800 litres of water a year in a household. If everyone in Ireland did just that, 2.9 billion litres of water would be saved each year. That’s 1,145 olympic-sized swimming pools.
3) Check that tap.
How often do you check leaking taps? Over time, it can lead to serious water waste and have longer-term have an impact on the well being of the local community and vital ecosystems.
Introduce a tap audit and check your taps frequently. A leaky tap can drip up to 150 litres of water a week. Repairing a leaky tap can save a huge 4,500 litres of water a year.
4) Get a low-flow aerator.
Install Water-saving Systems or reduced-flow heads on taps and showers. Low-flow tap aerators reduce the water pressure and save lots of water – don’t worry, you’ll still be able to wash. You will just be wasting less water and saving money. They’re easy to install and cost around €5.
6) Reduce the length of your shower to 4 minutes.
On average a 10 minute power shower uses 250 litres of water; by reducing to a 4-minute shower you can save approx of 150 litres or 75 two litre bottles of water. While in the shower, why not be savvy and save some water? A simple tip is to collect the water in a basin as it’s heating up. This water could be used for gardening or for your hot water bottle for chillier days.
7) Install a rainwater harvesting system to collect water from drain pipes.
Water butts are a great way to harvest water from your roof and garden. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, you could even make your own. Most will easily connect to an exterior drainpipe and will have a handy tap attached so you can water your garden with what it wants.
Water Saving Tips When On the Go:
Planning an upcoming day trip with your family? There are a number of ways you can save water while on the go.
8) Bring your own reusable water bottle.
If you’re heading out for a day at the beach or a family hike to make the most of the remaining days of summer, remember it’s still warm and humid, so make sure to stay hydrated for long days out. Filling your water at home can help you save from buying water while out and about and you can request for them to be filled enroute in a cafe, hotel or restaurant.
9) Bring veggie snacks – with the added bonus of being healthy on the go.
Did you know that 70% of the world’s water resources today are needed for food production? Meat products use the most water with 1 kg of beef needing around 13,500 litres of water to produce, 1 kg of pork needing 4,800 litres, and 1 kg of chicken needing 3,700 litres.. On the other hand, producing non-meat snacks such as an apple only uses 125 litres of water and a bag of crisps 185 litres. A burger may use 2,400 litres of water, but a cheese sandwich only uses 110 litres. So, your food choices on the go can also go towards saving water.
10) Use recycled water to wash your car or to water your garden
If you’re planning to clean your car before your day trip, wash it yourself using recycled water from your home. Rather than using water from the tap to water your veggies and plants, use water saved from washing vegetables in the kitchen sink, or from a rainwater harvesting butt. Many established plants don’t need as much water as you might think – try not to over-water.
11) Be a water hero.
When you’re out and about and see a running tap in a bar or restaurant, why not turn it off? Be a water hero and pay it forward, water-saving style.