This week Reduce Footprints has challenged us to take a closer look at our water footprint. I knew about the carbon footprint, but hadn’t seen the water footprint tables. I was in for a shock.
Before I share the challenge and what I found from the quiz I wanted to share a picture with you. I have legs on my loveseat. As soon as the cushions arrive I will have a new piece of furniture that suits me!!!
Here’s the challenge before me:
This week, consider your water footprint, particularly your indirect water use. Begin using my calculator at the bottom of this page Here (I found the extended calculator to be the best). If you need to convert measurements of food here’s a TOOL. Once you’ve calculated your water footprint, take a look at your results and see if there is an area that can be reduced. For example, if your primary water use is associated with cereals/grains, opt for varieties which require less water to produce (barley uses less water than rice). Reduce the amount of sugar you use (it takes 1,500 liters of water to produce 1 kilo of white sugar). Opt for fruits and veggies rather than meat (a kilo of beef requires 15, 500 to create) or opt for pork or chicken (4,800 and 3,900 liters respectively). Drink tea instead of coffee saving 110 liters of water per cup. Drive less (gasoline takes a lot of water). Buy less stuff (everything takes water to produce and transport). While reducing our water consumption is absolutely encouraged, this challenge is about looking at the indirect water we use.
This challenge originated with Argentum Vulgaris at Eco Crap.
I took the challenge and found my water footprint is 485. It is only this low because I don’t eat meat, and don’t drive. Questions I found I was particularly happy with were ones which asked how long a shower I take (I use the Navy Shower method, but I do waste water waiting for it to heat up so did add that water into my shower time). I also don’t wash a car or sidewalks. I don’t water grass but I do have a higher water usage for watering the garden, based on the amount I used last year during drought conditions.
While I will be trying to cut my water consumption by doing little things such as eating barley more than rice, I really do like the taste of barley better it’s just not as easy to find locally without lots of packaging.
My garden is where my water footprint took the biggest hit, but while I do my best to use as little as possible, I still prefer to use the water to grow as much of my food than the alternative of having my food trucked in, which will use as much water to grow if not more than I do, and all the waste that comes from that.