“Drought”: a word that began ricocheting through our minds as we anxiously surveyed the winter-time clouds, eager to see robust droplets pour down without end. We stared up through December, January, February, and March with little result. And here we are in August, anticipating the rain yet again, hoping that it delivers bounty in the form of water. But what if it doesn’t? Have you considered the possibility of another dry year? Have you thought about what you can do? The average Sonoma County resident uses 119 gallons of water per day. 119. Gallons. When I think gallons, I think milk and gas. 119 gallons of gas, why that’d fill my tank up almost ten times! 119 gallons of milk would get my brother through two years, happily. Milk and gas cost substantially more than water: I know very few people who scrutinize their water bill like they do that of their groceries and gas. It is unfortunately easy to forget that fresh water, like all other resources is limited. Only 2.5% of water on earth is fresh, that’s including ice and snow. And our California projections aren’t looking very promising.
Aside from quenching our thirst, we use water daily to complete our household chores, and to keep ourselves clean. So, what can you do to reduce your consumption?
- Stop running the water while you’re brushing your teeth. You can save up to 3 gallons a day!
- Water your garden and lawn either in the early morning, or late evening to prevent evaporation. The best hours are morning, before or at 6 AM.
- Don’t wash your car. If you must, bring it to a car wash that recycles their water, like Mission Car Wash (59 Mission Circle, Santa Rosa) or Rohnert Park Car Wash (200 Classic Court, Rohnert Park).
- Plug the sink drain while shaving and washing dishes.
- Scrape tableware without rinsing before loading into your dishwasher and make sure the dishwasher is completely full before running.
- Use greywater to water your garden. Not only does this lower your use of fresh water, but the plants thrive on used water with bits of compost!
- Fix leaks. One small leak has the ability to waste 500 gallons a month.
- Reduce time spent in the shower and replace baths with showers.
- Use a broom rather than a hose on your driveway.
- Lose the bottled water. It takes 3 times the amount of water to make bottled water than to fill it. Not to mention the price of bottled water is up to 10,000 times the cost of tap water.
Our markets offer a variety of greywater safe & biodegradable cleaning products; including: Seventh Generation, Ecos, Vaska, Dr. Bronners, Biokleen, Lifetree, and Ecover.
We, at Oliver’s are constantly mindful of the water usage within our locations. The Oliver’s Market green team performs weekly store audits, ensuring that we don’t have any leaks and that we’re using low flow sink aerators. We also monitor our water bills in case of dramatic increases. Additionally, we are always forming new methods of conservation.
Come October, I encourage you to start doing a little rain dance. Please embrace the showers, if and when they come this season. And as always, we recommend you share with your family and friends what you’re doing to help save our planet, to live a more conscious and sustainable life and to learn more about how we can quickly and easily be more Green!