Find Out Why We Should Save Water
Why Should We Save Water?
Fresh water is a scarce resource in the Western Cape, as rainfall varies from year to year.
We depend on water to survive and our growing population places strain on our natural resources, especially water. Everyone has a role to play in ensuring that our water is sustainable for future generations. A huge amount of fresh water is used to irrigate farmland for food production.
It is essential for manufacturing, particularly in heavy industries like electricity generation and iron and steel production, which need large amounts of water for cooling, or as a power source. A reliable supply of fresh water is critical for all households too.
Conserving water can also save energy. To pump the water from a central facility into your home, garden or office, energy is required to run the pumps. So saving water means using less energy which not only reduces your annual water bill but also your carbon footprint.
What we can do to save water and money
- Check and fix all leaks on your property. See these handy tips from the City of Cape Town.
- Take shorter showers and turn off the shower while soaping up, then turn it back on to rinse.
- Make sure you put a full load into your washing machine and dishwasher before starting a wash cycle.
- Cut down the amount of water flushed down the toilet by placing a 2 litre plastic bottle full of water in the water tank (cistern) of your toilet.
- When washing dishes by hand, don't leave the water running to rinse dishes.
- Use greywater (from the washing machine, basins, shower and bath) in the garden.
In the Garden
- Plant indigenous (local) plants which can tolerate extreme heat and require little watering.
- Group plants with the same water needs together so that you don’t overwater plants with different water needs.
- Put a covering layer (mulch) around trees and plants. Covering will slow evaporation and will also discourage weeds from growing.
- Water your garden at sunrise and sunset. Water your lawn long enough for the moisture to soak down to the roots. A light sprinkling can evaporate quickly.
- Plant in the right season. For winter rainfall areas, you'll need to plant in autumn and early winter so the plants have a chance to develop their root systems before the dry season. In summer rainfall areas, you can plant in spring and early summer.
In the Industrial and Commercial Sector
- Define water requirements for your department, building or unit of production.
- Appoint a person to track water usage and identify strengths and weaknesses.
- Present the idea of water efficient appliances in canteens or office kitchens. Fill kettles only with as much water as you need.
- Try and avoid ornamental water features and fountains that lose water to evaporation.
- Encourage people to be alert of leaking taps and report major water losses from leaking or damaged pipes and hoses.
- Keep paths around the building tidy. Avoid the use of hoses to remove leaves etc.
- Encourage people to wash company vehicles at commercial car washers that recycled water.
- Reduce leaks by turning taps off lightly and getting washers replaced when leaks are discovered.
- Upgrade production equipment to use recycled water or less water.
- Know where your master water shut-off valve is located.
Simple changes can help you save up to 10% on your annual water bill, without drastically changing your lifestyle.
Some more interesting and helpful information is available at: