Wet Countries Urged To Reconnect With Water Worth & Costs
Countries around the world that see a lot of rainfall – the UK included – have been called on to reconnect with their water resources and really consider their worth and costs in order to safeguard our supplies on an international level.
Writing for BBC Future, enviro-social journalist Tim Smedley explained that when thinking about water scarcity, the last country that comes to mind would be the UK, since it often feels like it’s never going to stop raining.
Our average rainfall is 1,200mm a year, compared to the 300s seen in the likes of Afghanistan. But with summer fast approaching, much of the country will be hit with drought-like conditions, with 2018 hit with six months in a row of below average rainfall, which really depleted reservoir levels. And in 2017, we saw the driest ten-month period for over 100 years.
Raising awareness of water scarcity issues is, of course, key, but it seems that members of the public aren’t clued up to the problem we’re facing.
Senior government affairs officer for charity The Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust Hannah Freeman said: “People don’t see water as something we need to save. The [public perception is] we are a wet country. But the [latest] climate change projects say that the chance of dry summers is going to increase by up to 50 per cent.”
WWF-UK’s Catherine Moncrieff believes that, even though dry spells and droughts will become more frequent in this country, the main issue is that people use their water resources in a wasteful way.
Just half of the households in England and Wales have water meters, for example, while the other half pay flat monthly rates no matter how much water they use. This means that they could leave the tap running all day and face no additional costs because of it.
Businesses can start taking action now by focusing on commercial rainwater harvesting and other such strategies to reduce water usage and wastage.
Harvesting the water that collects on the roof of your site after rainfall is a great way of protecting your mains water supply, since this water can be filtered and reused in its stead. You could utilise it for toilet flushing, laundry and process water, vehicle washing and more.
And don’t forget that doing this will have the added benefit of reducing your water bills, as well as your water consumption. The summer months may well see a rise in mains water restrictions and rates of usage, but harvesting rainwater will reduce your reliance upon mains water through efficient recycling of rainwater for applications such as landscape watering, landry, cooling and fire sprinkler systems, urinal usage and more.
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