In November 2016 the New York Department of Environmental Conservation announced that New York is facing a statewide drought. As of March 2017, a drought watch is still in effect around most of the state. New York residents are advised to monitor their water usage, so here are some tips to reduce your water usage, which can also help you save water, and potentially save money on your water bill.
When brushing your teeth or shaving, instead of leaving the water running, turn it off. You can also save water in the bathroom by taking shorter showers. Another way to save water is to avoid flushing the toilet unnecessarily. You can also purchase water saving showerheads and faucets.
Instead of using plastic bottles use your own reusable bottle that you can refill. This not only will reduce plastic waste and save water, but you will also save money! If you do have to use a plastic water bottle, try to refill it and use it for plants or other household uses. There are different ways to save up on water.
Check around your house for leaks. 10% of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more water each day. Check www.epa.gov/watersense to learn more about leaks.
In the laundry room instead of doing multiple loads, try to wash the majority of your clothes in one load.
Cut down on the amount of meat you consume. It takes thousands of gallons of water to produce meat because of the water the animals need as they are raised. If you’re not ready to take the leap to full vegetarian-ism, you can take small steps by choosing not to eat meat one day each week (e.g., Meatless Mondays)
During the summer months when planting in the garden, try to purchase plants that require less water.
Purchase recycled goods, as recycled goods require less water to produce compared to new products.
If you have access to a dishwasher… use it! Washing dishes by hand can waste up to 30 gallons of water for just one round of hand washing. Try to only run the dishwasher when it is full, though.
This article was first published on the New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund website.