WATER CONSERVATION

We sometimes wonder, “What can I do to help the water shortage in this region?” Here are some suggestions … send us more!

In the kitchen:

• When washing dishes by hand, fill the sink basin or a large container and rinse when all of the dishes have been soaped and scrubbed.

• Wash your fruits and vegetables in a pan of water instead of letting the water run while you scrape them clean.

• Keep a pitcher of water in the fridge for drinks instead of running the tap.

In the laundry room:

• Run your washing machine (and dishwasher) only when full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.

• Consider using a large plastic trash can to capture rinse water for plants with a bucket.

In the garden and yard:

• Use drip irrigation for shrubs and trees to apply water directly to the roots where it’s needed.

• Reduce the amount of lawn in your yard by planting shrubs and ground covers appropriate to your site and region.

• Collect the water you use for rinsing fruits and vegetables, and then reuse it to water houseplants.

In the bathroom:

• Shorten your shower by a minute or two and you’ll save up to 150 gallons per month.

• Keep a bucket in the shower and bathroom sink to catch water as it warms up or runs. Use this water to flush toilets or water plants.

Water conservation consciousness:

• Monitor your water bill for unusually high use. Your bill and water meter are tools that can help you discover leaks.

• Encourage your local school system and government to develop and promote water conservation among children and adults.

BY THE WAY, WHAT ARE THE FACTS?

• 75% of our earth is covered with water yet 1.4 billion people live without clean drinking water.

• The Independence Aquifer has been overexploited for at least 60 years.

• Wells must be drilled up to 300 meters or more to reach the water level.

• Water is the basic problem in San Miguel.

• Citizens have no idea we are drinking fossil water and that the aquifer is being overexploited.

• Water comes from 17 wells for the city of San Miguel.

• The water system is from 25 to 50 years old (down town) and water leaks go from 20 to 40 percent.

• Normally citizens don’t drink water directly from the faucet.

• Some communities don’t have any water or receive water one hour per week.

• Water depletion is a result of bad irrigation practices, over grazing, deforestation, soil erosion and sand extraction, and the increasing population.

• Without the appropriate water practices the aquifer’s water quality and quantity will diminish.

• 83 percent of the water goes to agriculture, 12 percent goes to urban areas, 3 percent applies to services and 2 percent to industry.

• Desertification is increasing and is visible.

• Irrigation practices must be optimized and crops should be changed for those that consume less water, changing eating habits.

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