(StatePoint) It’s that time of year to start setting New Year’s resolutions: work out more; get a new job; save money. While these are admirable goals, have you considered how your resolutions might make a bigger impact?
Protecting our water is one of the biggest challenges facing the planet, but many of us don’t realize how much water flows through our lives every day. According to the EPA, the average US household wastes nearly 10,000 gallons of water each year – roughly enough to fill a residential-sized swimming pool. Talk about a reality check.
This year, resolve to care for our most precious resource with a few simple eco-conscious tricks and swaps that will reduce water waste and keep our water clean – not to mention help out your wallet, too.
• Implement meatless Mondays: A single pound of beef requires more than 1,800 gallons of water to produce, compared to tofu, which only takes approximately 300 gallons, according to the Water Footprint Network. So, once a week, plan a meat alternative for a meal or hit up your hipster, foodie friend and go to a vegan restaurant (they’re all the rage right now).
• Reuse excess water: Your leftover cooking water is liquid gold. Save water remaining from boiling pasta and steaming vegetables and recycle it by nourishing your houseplants or outdoor garden with the surplus. Plus, your plants will love the extra nutrients.
• Replace your showerhead: A great way to conserve water is by installing a low-flow showerhead. With an Eco-Performance showerhead, like the Velocity rainshower showerhead from Moen, you can conserve water and still have plenty of pressure to lather, rinse and repeat.
• Invest in a reusable water bottle: Whether you’re chugging water after SoulCycle or casually sipping throughout the day, reusable water bottles are convenient and eco-friendly. With the growing problem of plastic pollution in our water supply (see ya, straws!), utilizing a reusable water bottle can make a big difference, with the possibility to save an average of 156 plastic bottles each year, according to EarthDay.org.
• Try a waterless facial cleanser: The secret is out: rinse-free cleansers are taking over. These detergent-free liquids will purify skin of dirt, oil and makeup. Simply apply a few drops to a cotton pad, swipe it across your skin and you’re done. These cleansers will get your complexion squeaky clean -- no water necessary.
As you pledge to improve yourself in the year ahead, these great water-saving ideas can help you be more conscientious when it comes to protecting this limited resource -- and will ensure you’ll get a hearty pat-on-the-back from Mother Earth.