December 02 2011

Household Water Control: If It’s Yellow Let It Mellow, If It’s Brown Flush It Down

water managementAccording to Worldchanging, a nonprofit media organization dedicated to solutions-based journalism about the planetary future, the Department of Water Services is the largest consumer of electricity in California. This detrimental relation between electricity and water is an overuse of energy to solely distribute water throughout California.

Within Los Angeles, The City’s water consumption has remained steady since 1990, despite the 15% population increase. This was possible because contemporary urban planning optimizes water-use by examining aspects such as:

Urban design includes rainwater tanks, which encourage a self-sustainable urban environment by harvesting rainwater. Managing household rainwater reduces water overflow in sewages and minimizes transforming rainwater into stormwater (harmful rainwater after it accumulates debris, chemicals and other pollutants from the streets), which adversely affects the environment;

  •  Toilets:

Some tips and tricks include applying “if it’s yellow let it mellow, if it’s brown flush it down.” Another would be to use the “brick-in-the-tank” technique. Placing a brick in the toilet reduces water flow by decreasing the reservoir size. It’s also a common practice to employ rainwater to flush toilets, as well;

  • Washing Machines:

Saving for an energy-efficient and water-saving washing machine will greatly lower overall household electricity, and water-use.Front loading washers may cost more than top loading washers; however, they have a larger capacity meaning fewer loads and, ultimately, less water-use. Look for the Energy Star, a joint program between the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy, which recognizes the most energy-efficient and environmentally-friendly appliances and electronics;

Defined as wastewater generated from domestic activity, including laundering, dishwashing and bathing. State and local greywater laws and policies vary, so investigate first to determine if restrictions apply in your area. One way greywater is used is to flush toilets. And for those who cook rice, a suggestion would be to reuse the water used to rinse rice for watering plants. Rice water actually contains minerals beneficial for plant growth.

Taking control of household water sustainability can have a big impact on the city’s water control overall. What are other methods you know of or practice within your household?

Credit: Image and documents link to source.

Benjamin Ha

Benjamin Ha recently graduated as an Honors Scholar from New York University with a Bachelor’s in English and American Literature with a concentration in Creative Writing. Prior to Global Site Plans, Ben’s experiences revolved primarily around issues of public health. After realizing that the environment plays a critical role in the effects of public health, his interests gravitated toward understanding the interaction between the social and natural environment. In the near future, he hopes to pursue a Master’s in Environmental Science after obtaining a Global Sustainability Certification at UCLA. Ben is originally from the Bay Area in California, and now resides in Los Angeles.

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This entry was posted on Friday, December 2nd, 2011 at 8:23 am and is filed under Energy, Environment, Environmental Design, Housing, Technology. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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