A Bucket of (water) Savings

Storm moving in_XG_20090826_LAH_9761Where’s the rain? Colorado, like much of the nation, is experiencing a severe drought. Last year brought us only half our average precipitation, and the preceding years haven’t been much better. Even the April storms we’ve had won’t eliminate the need for the water rationing that started April 1 here in Colorado Springs. Looking ahead to summer, we might be feeling a down. Who likes a brown lawn?

We garden for pleasure, to make our yards look attractive, or to provide fresh, healthy food that supplements what we buy at the grocery store. Farmers and ranchers, on the other hand, raise food for their livelihood—and so we’ll have something to buy at when we go shopping. A lack of water can be catastrophic, not only for their bank accounts, but for all of us who depend on their products.

A ranch southeast of town here reported that last year they received only three inches of moisture—far short of their normal ten to twelve inches. It was almost as bad in 2010 and 2011, with five inches per year. The native grasses are so parched, they’re dying. As a result, the ranch is selling their cows—and their chance for making any profit this year. They’re making a last-ditch attempt to save the shortgrass prairies, but nothing can protect vegetation the if rain doesn’t fall.

Water is used in manufacturing as well as agriculture. The cars we drive, the paper we write on, the clothes we wear—pretty much everything we use requires water at some point in its creation.

This chart was brought to my attention and I thought it so interesting, I wanted to share with you. I raise chickens, and I know that they drink more than, say, our cat. It makes sense—they lay liquid-filled eggs. But I had no idea that it takes anywhere near eight gallons of water to make my morning cup of tea!

Be sure to look over the entire chart. At the bottom you’ll find some suggestions on how to save water at home. We already eat more chicken than beef, and we installed low-flow shower heads years ago. I don’t plan to give up tea, but I’ll certainly appreciate it more (if that’s possible). What other steps can we take to conserve?


Chart created by Loch Ness Water Gardens. Want to help save water?  Share this infographic!  If you have a blog, please post it on your site.  Thanks!!!

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