Water Works For Us

Colorado River: A River Run Dry From Overuse
The Colorado River is one of the most used and contested waterways on Earth. It provides water for 30 million people, and has many dams and diversions along its 1,450 miles (2,333 kilometers).
Because it is so heavily tapped for agriculture, industry, and municipal uses along its course, the Colorado River rarely reaches its delta and the Gulf of California. About one-tenth of the river’s former flow now makes it to Mexico, but most of that is used for farming and cities south of the border. View Larger

Colorado River: A River Run Dry From Overuse

The Colorado River is one of the most used and contested waterways on Earth. It provides water for 30 million people, and has many dams and diversions along its 1,450 miles (2,333 kilometers).

Because it is so heavily tapped for agriculture, industry, and municipal uses along its course, the Colorado River rarely reaches its delta and the Gulf of California. About one-tenth of the river’s former flow now makes it to Mexico, but most of that is used for farming and cities south of the border.


Little Things You Can Do To Conserve Water: Apparel & Possessions

  • It takes about 100 gallons of water to grow and process a single pound of cotton, and the average American goes through about 35 pounds of new cotton material each year. Do you really need that additional T-shirt?
  • One of the best ways to conserve water is to buy recycled goods, and to recycle your stuff when you’re done with it. Or, stick to buying only what you really need.
  • The water required to create your laptop could wash nearly 70 loads of laundry in a standard machine.
  • Recycling a pound of paper, less than the weight of your average newspaper, saves about 3.5 gallons of water. Buying recycled paper products saves water too, as it takes about six gallons of water to produce a dollar worth of paper.

(Source: National Geographic)


Having a water-friendly backyard, and making it beautiful!
Consider a low-maintenance landscape — one that requires little more water than nature provides. Often called "xeriscaping”, the principles of a low-maintenance landscape are as follows:
a reduced amount of lawn;
proper plan selection making use of native grasses, shrubs and trees;
the use of rain barrels / roof drainage
mulching to reduce evaporative losses around shrubs and trees;
improvements to soils;
a proper irrigation system; and
planned maintenance.
The most significant savings of course, come from a reduction in lawn area and switching from exotic plant forms to native species which require less water. In general, lawn areas should not exceed what is useful for play and social activities, and should be limited to the backyard where the family spends the majority of its time.

Having a water-friendly backyard, and making it beautiful!

Consider a low-maintenance landscape — one that requires little more water than nature provides. Often called "xeriscaping”, the principles of a low-maintenance landscape are as follows:

  • a reduced amount of lawn;
  • proper plan selection making use of native grasses, shrubs and trees;
  • the use of rain barrels / roof drainage
  • mulching to reduce evaporative losses around shrubs and trees;
  • improvements to soils;
  • a proper irrigation system; and
  • planned maintenance.

The most significant savings of course, come from a reduction in lawn area and switching from exotic plant forms to native species which require less water. In general, lawn areas should not exceed what is useful for play and social activities, and should be limited to the backyard where the family spends the majority of its time.


Little Things You Can Do To Conserve Water: Travel & Transportation

  • Washing a car uses about 150 gallons of water, so by washing less frequently you can cut back your water use.
  • A gallon of gasoline takes nearly 13 gallons of water to produce. Combine your errands, car pool to work, or take public transportation to reduce both your energy and water use.
  • Flying from Los Angeles to San Francisco, about 700 miles round-trip, could cost you more than 9,000 gallons of water, or enough for almost 2,000 average dishwasher loads.
  • A cross-country airplane trip (about 6,000 miles) could be worth more than 1,700 standard toilet flushes.

(Source: National Geographic)


Canada’s Water Consumption

  • Canada ranks 15th out of 16 peer countries and earns a “D” grade.
  • Canada’s water consumption is more than double that of the 16-country average. Industry is Canada’s largest water user.
  • Excessive water consumption in Canada can be attributed to the lack of widespread water conservation practices.

Canada’s water consumption was 1,494 cubic metres per capita in 2000. In their homes alone, Canadians used over 300 litres of water per person per day. Canada’s water consumption per capita was over nine times greater than that of the U.K., the best performer, and more than double that of the 16-country average. Canada ranks second to last out of all 16 countries and earns a “D” grade. Only the U.S. consumes more water per person, at 1,682 cubic metres per capita.

Ten of Canada’s peer countries had water consumption below the average of 641 cubic metres per capita; nine received an “A.”


(Source: conferenceboard.ca)