Nation of water wasters – new campaign to save 20 litres a day

Britain is a nation of water wasters, according to a new Defra campaign. The average household uses over 100,000 litres of water a year – that’s the equivalent of 317 pints or 150 litres per person per day. Taking steps now to use water wisely will help ensure the future of our water supply, help to limit the effects of climate change and protect the natural environment – and save money in the process.

Fronted by TV presenter Kate Humble, the Act on CO2 campaign aims to help people to save 20 litres a day each with simple tips to reduce everyday water usage.

Despite being an island – and our reputation for wet weather – the UK actually has less available water per head than many European countries including France, Italy and Greece. London, for example, has less annual rainfall than Rome, Paris or Naples. As pressure intensifies on our already limited water resources from a growing population, infrastructure development, lifestyle choices and climate change water is an increasingly precious resource we need to conserve.

 Environment Minister Huw Irranca-Davies said:

'We are already taking too much water from some of our rivers and groundwater to meet demand but we can’t maintain this without seriously harming our environment, especially as our climate becomes warmer and drier in places. If we don’t act now we could lose some of our precious biodiversity forever. Not only that but continued wasteful consumption of water is harming our climate for future generations due to the energy used in the supply process.

'It is vital that we all act now and take these simple steps to waste less water in our day to day lives to help protect our future.'

 The water saving campaign shows how even simple measures can make a big difference including:

  • Turning off the tap while brushing your teeth saves six litres of water a minute
  • Cutting your shower time by just one minute can save nine litres of water
  • Using a bowl to wash your dishes rather than leaving the tap running saves up to six litres a minute.
  • Using a watering can or a bucket in the garden or washing the car instead of a hosepipe saves 16 litres a minute.

Research shows that 87 percent of people don’t use a water-saving bag in their toilet cistern yet this could save one litre of water per flush with minimal outlay or effort. Similarly only 3 percent use an aerated/water efficient shower head which could save up to six litres of water a minute. Making simple water saving tips can also help you save money through reduced energy bills and water bills if you’re on a meter.

Kate Humble who is spear-heading the campaign said:

'Water is a precious resource but we all waste too much of it. Saving water at home doesn’t need to be a big sacrifice - just spending one minute less in the shower can make a big difference. Simple changes can really add up to a better environment - meaning more water for the wildlife and countryside around us as well as saving on carbon emissions generated in the treatment and transportation of water to our taps.'

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