Be Water Smart by Brianna Moore

Jun 4th, 2013 | By | Category: Make a Difference!, Youth Blog

water conservationin your hands water

Rain barrels can help you be water smart.  Our lakes provide a fifth of the world’s fresh water.  Simply creating or purchasing a rain barrel can help preserve our fresh water and keep our lakes healthy and clean.  In addition, collecting rain water will also help to protect the many unique species that live and thrive in our lakes.

There are several things you can do to help protect our local lakes.  First, you can connect a rain barrel to your downspout, instead of letting the rain just runoff.  The collected rain can be used to water your house plants or your backyard garden, thus saving many gallons of fresh water.  Older African Americans have been known to collect the first May rain for good luck or for washing their hair and doing their laundry.  In addition, this simple method of using a rain barrel will allow you to save money.  Also, if you update your outdated appliances in your home, like your  dishwasher, toilet or outdated showers, it is guaranteed to save you additional money.  This will put the money back into your pocket and save gallons and gallons of water every time you run your new appliances.  Planting a tree in your yard will also aid in reducing your water usage and in reducing and removing pollutants.  The roots of the tree will suck up the pollutants that is carried in the rainwater which will help transform those pollutants into less harmful substances.  Additionally you should start using non toxic cleaners in your home because every toxin you allow to go down the drain will end up in our water system whether the water is treated or untreated.

michigan fresh water

Lake Michigan: A source of fresh water


1.  When washing dishes by hand, don’t let the water run while rinsing. Fill one sink with wash water and the other with rinse water.

2.  Some refrigerators, air conditioners and ice-makers are cooled with wasted flows of water. Consider upgrading with air-cooled appliances for significant water savings.

3.  Adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street.

4.  Run your clothes washer and dishwasher only when they are full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.

5.  Choose shrubs and ground covers instead of turf for hard-to-water areas such as steep slopes and isolated strips.

6.  Install covers on pools and spas and check for leaks around your pumps.

7.  Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Compost vegetable food waste instead and save gallons every time.

8.  Plant in the fall when conditions are cooler and rainfall is more plentiful.

9.  Water your lawn and garden in the morning or evening when temperatures are cooler to minimize evaporation.

10.  Monitor your water bill for unusually high use. Your bill and water meter are tools that can help you discover leaks.

conserve water chart

Question:  If water is constantly being cleaned and recycled through the earth’s water cycle, why do we need to conserve it?

Answer:  The answer is that people use up our planet’s fresh water faster than it can naturally be replenished.



By Brianna L. Moore, Volunteer Youth Blogger

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