I heard an interview a while back with a woman who, in an effort to conserve water, pledged to take “navy showers” every day for a year. This involves only running the water when you absolutely need to. In other words, turn the shower on, get wet, turn the shower off, soap up/shave/etc…, turn the shower back on, rinse, and you’re done. And while this is admirable from a water conservation perspective, quite frankly I’m just not that dedicated. I’m willing to sacrifice my comfort to a degree, but I draw the line at shaving goose bumps on my legs. Ouch.
However, I do recognize the importance of conserving water, and there are a myriad of other things I am willing to do. Turning the water off while I brush my teeth (yes, most of us learned this in the 80’s, but you’d be surprised how many people still leave it running!). Using my leftover drinking water (you know, all those half-empty glasses you leave lying around) to water my houseplants. Keeping a jug of cold water in the fridge so I don’t have to run the water for ages to get a cold drink. Using the rain barrel I installed a few years back – that’s right, I installed it, but never used it. Oops. Planting native perennials that don’t require much watering – though even my hardy flowers are looking limp in this summer’s heat.
Given that most of the above are things I already do to some degree, they don’t count as my resolution. So my green pledge for today will be to reduce my shower time to 4 minutes. This is pretty easy as I have a toddler and rarely get to take long showers, but it does mean I’ll sacrifice those occasional, indulgent, enjoyable long hot showers. I suppose it’s the least I can do since I’m not willing to take the “navy shower” plunge!
In case any of you aren’t sold on the need to conserve water, I thought I’d share this picture from the California Academy of Science, posted on their FB page. Hopefully none of you are still throwing your money away on bottled water, but in case you are, have a look. Most powerful stat, in my opinion, is that you’re paying more for bottled water than gas!!