Updated: Nov 21
A sustainable water strategy requires measures, technologies, and practices to ensure safe, reliable water supplies at an affordable cost. It focuses on managing, preserving, and distributing the available water amid multiple environmental factors to meet all agricultural and household demands.
You can ensure water sustainability by reducing your water use, taking eco-conscious steps to conserve water, and investing in innovative technology like water softeners and water filters.
The world’s water supply is at risk. The human population is growing exponentially, and water intake continues to rise as well - all while freshwater sources dwindle.
A sustainable water strategy is a key to the proper growth of the community.
This article will highlight some essential sustainable water strategies that are beneficial in the long run.
Conservation begins at home. Let’s dive in!
Exemplary water conservation means reducing the water you use to the point where you do not waste it. Though conservation is not the only solution to groundwater depletion, it is one way to retain what you have.
For instance, you can turn off the tap while brushing teeth or use smart drip technology to water plants instead of water pipes. Moreover, inspect your taps and pipelines for any leakages and reduce unnecessary car washes when possible. Another way is to invest in a low flush toilet and reuse gray water for water conservation.
You can even convert your toilet flush to a low-flush by putting a brick or another water container inside the flush tank. This way, it consumes less water for flushing.
Better still, reuse bath water for your plants. Although it’s the greenest choice, keep in mind that some soaps are toxic for plants. For example, some antibacterial ingredients, certain bleach types, and products containing abrasives can harm your trees, shrubs, and flowers.
Also, smart bathroom equipment like the Oasense Reva intelligent sensing showerhead is an excellent way to save more than half of your water while showering. It detects movement and automatically cuts the flow up to only 10% once you step away.
Reusing treated wastewater for non-drinking purposes is a growing trend that many manufacturers and facilities take to reduce their water footprint.
Many districts are now switching to recycled water for cooling towers. Reclaimed water can be a viable and cost-efficient alternative for an industrial company to cool down the machinery of their factories.
Since industries are always in need of water for cooling operations, sewer water can be a great resource. Likewise, this water is still useful for agriculture after filtration, so there are enough recycled water applications. It also helps mitigate the effects of drought conditions and protect waterways and lakes from run-off pollution.
You can start by preserving water in your home. For example, try shorter showers, collect rainwater, and save water whenever you can.
Regions with heavy rainfall can benefit from the stormwater collection strategy as it helps maintain their groundwater supply and green vegetation. You can save on water supply costs with stormwater, produce potable water and reduce dependence on municipal supply.
Collecting stormwater also lowers your carbon footprint by cutting down on conventional water pumped from non-renewable sources. You will need few plumbing fixtures as most rainwater systems are self-contained units with minimal piping.
Sustainable water strategy may sound like an extraterrestrial term for those living in cities and towns that receive scanty rainfall. However, studies show that water shortage will affect 40% of the world’s population within the decade.
Collecting rainwater is one great way to sustain water under the earth. It’s a rising practice in most urban setups and is becoming increasingly popular not just in households but commercial buildings, complexes, and larger buildings.
A conventional rainwater collection system will have a storage tank and a structure to help collect rainwater from different channels. These systems are fairly simple to install too.
After the water is collected through storm drains, it moves to a storage facility or natural waterways such as a lake or river. As a result, it can help lower flood risks, support local wildlife, and provide opportunities for recreational use.
So, the construction of dams and miniature artificial lakes is a great option to use stormwater to your advantage. As the water accumulates in these lakes, it can suffice for several commercial applications too.
In addition to the other water conservation techniques, installing a rainwater collection system could be one of your priorities. It may require some homework to identify the potential areas where the water accumulates most. However, as the rainy season approaches, you will understand that it was worth the effort.
Many governments have taken steps to preserve rainwater. For instance, Los Angeles, Melbourne, and other cities are now investing in rainwater collection projects.
Water resource optimization
Water resource optimization is a proactive approach to conservation by evaluating the water resources in an area, analyzing how to use them best to sustain life, and then recommend improvements. First, it’s essential to evaluate tasks that need more water. Then, you can use your available resources more efficiently and optimize water use for your work.
For example, if your garden needs two gallons of water, make sure that the source of water for your garden doesn’t have a larger tank. This way, it binds you to use a limited quantity of water.
Find out the amount of water your household uses on an average day. This number will be different for everyone depending on their lifestyle, but a standard is usually between 80-100 gallons per person daily or more.
Smart devices can make water conservation easier. You can use them to accurately measure how much water your household uses and help you set out precise targets for future savings.
Also, do a bit of research about water requirements for plants in your garden. It’s quite surprising how much water you can save on gardening if you use recommended water levels. You can use a watering can rather than a hose for potted plants if possible.
Filtration to make water usable
Filtration is primarily a job for municipalities. However, adopting miniature filters can help sustain water. For instance, if an overhead rainwater collection tank contains a decent amount of water, applying filters can make the water more useful. So, the water is no longer used for general cleaning only. Instead, you can use the same water for cooking and even drinking.
A water filter removes contaminants from the water supply to make it safer for drinking, cooking, bathing, or cleaning. You can use a water filter alone or in tandem with other water treatment devices like water softeners.
The standard filters can remove bacteria and germs from the line water. In addition, they are equally effective for rainwater too. Other than rainwater, you can use filters on gray water to make it usable for plants and car washing.
Chemically treating hard water
Hard water can increase your water consumption as washing off soap and detergent from dishes becomes challenging. The mineral content in hard water can also result in an unpleasant taste, limescale build-up inside pipes, high energy costs to heat the water, and mineral deposits that create clogs in faucets. But water softeners provide an easy way to protect your appliances, cut water consumption in half, keep your skin soft, and help you save money.
While you can use DIY methods for hardness testing, it’s better to consult a professional to check your water for hardness. Non-professional water testing kits often give you the wrong results.
A water softener improves water quality in households as it prevents damage to bathroom taps and pipes. It also eliminates the need for expensive descaling agents.
In addition, a water softener makes laundry more manageable and your hair shiny. How? It removes the harsh minerals that make towels feel rough, clothes appear dingy, and hair look dull.
Water softeners typically do not remove contaminants that may be present in the water. So, you will have to install an additional filtration system, such as a carbon-based filter, reverse osmosis system, or distillation unit to remove contaminants.
These systems will not remove dissolved solids like calcium and magnesium. Still, they can help reduce heavy metals like lead or mercury, organic chemicals like chlorine or VOCs (volatile organic compounds), particulates like sediment and dirt, and microorganisms like bacteria and protozoa.
Desalination to create more clean water
Desalination is removing salts and minerals from saline water. Municipalities and industries have developed a series of technologies to desalinate seawater to obtain clean water for domestic and industrial use. These technologies vary in process complexity, cost-effectiveness, energy consumption, and environmental impact.
Desalination is a complicated process and quite expensive because of high energy consumption. So, to make it a more sustainable strategy, it is necessary to replace fossil fuels with green energy solutions.
Traditional techniques rely on distillation, which requires high temperatures to evaporate the salt water but is energy-intensive and inefficient. As global water supplies become increasingly unavailable, desalination becomes a critical alternative that cleanly transforms seawater into fresh water for drinking, agriculture, or industrial use.
Desalination plants can shift to solar power systems, which are cost-effective and environment-friendly. In addition, unlike fossil fuels that destroy the ozone layer and pollute air and groundwater, solar power produces zero emissions and leaves no waste behind.
Although solar desalination plants are rare, some countries have taken the first step. For example, 6000 islands in Greece enjoy water from a solar-powered desalination plant.
Also, wind energy is a promising solution for desalination plants. Wind power can help by reducing the amount of electricity needed to run the reverse osmosis process at coastal desalination plants. This energy could save millions of dollars annually in operating costs.
Use fully-loaded dishwashers and laundry
Using a fully loaded dishwasher and laundry is an incredible water-sustaining strategy. When you load your dishwasher or washing machine to the maximum capacity, you can reduce the cleaning cycles and save water. But if you have fewer plates and clothes, it’s better to wash them by hand.
It seems like the greener option would be to wash dishes and clothes by hand. All those automatic dishwashers and washing machines use so much energy, right?
And even if it takes a little elbow grease, you know you’re not wasting water the way you would be with a dishwasher and a washing machine. But that’s only true if you have a few dishes or clothes at hand.
It is most economical to operate your dishwasher and washing machines when they are full. The energy star-rated dishwasher uses only 3 gallons of water per cycle, while it takes nearly 27 gallons of water to do the same job manually.
Sustainable water strategies try to find a balance between water supply and demand. While some of the strategies may not be yours to implement, you can always contribute on a micro-level. For instance, you can have short baths, use recycled water for cleaning purposes, and install water saving devices like smart showers to reduce water wastes for sustainability.
The Oasense Reva smart showerhead embodies a sense of pride and responsibility to give you an ultimate shower experience. It can take your everyday shower from being wasteful to being sustainable. How? It uses sensor technology to reduce water flow whenever you step away from the shower.
No more fumbling around. You can install the Oasense showerhead within 15 seconds without tools or bathroom modification.