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Blog Action Day 2010: Be Creative, Save Water

MIND SOUP: So today, October 15, is Blog Action Day 2010. The theme this year is water. As I live in a country where water is theoretically abundant, I, as many other Lebanese, may not feel the urge to conserve water or use it wisely.

But as I watch TV and read bloggers posts from other countries, I have become more aware of the critical water situation the world is facing. After enrolling as a blogger against hunger for the United Nations World Food Programme and engaging more into the world blogosphere, I was shocked to know that around 4.500 children die daily from water related diseases and that a almost a billion people on Earth don't have access to clean and safe drinking water!

Since then I realized that there are so many things with our water consumption in Lebanon. We take hour-long showers, flood our houses to get them cleaned, stare at the open faucet while brushing our teeth, and use excessive amounts of water to irrigate our flowers and plants. But the most unfortunate thing is that we let all that water we have go to waste, all those rivers end up in the sea. My history teacher at school told us something that I will never forget. He always used to stress that if the Lebanese government built just on dam on the dozen-plus major rivers that we have, we not only be able to satisfy the water needs of the Gulf (and perhaps the Middle East) but also generate enough water-powered electricity to light up the whole MENA region.

Too bad the only concern for Lebanese politicians is sectarianism and stupid religious rivalry. But I digress.

So here's a few creative and possibly weird ways to save water that I found online while researching for this post.
  • The weirdest one I found is Brazilian in origin: peeing in the shower Brazilian way. This means that if you are in the shower and you feel like you have to pee, then just handle your business in the shower. Rather than coming out of the shower to use the toilet bowl and flushing it, it is recommending that you help yourself in the shower so that those gallons of water that would have been wasted while you flushed would be saved, 1157 gallons a year to be exact.
  • Here's another weird one: Put a brick in your toilet. A brick in the toilet tank takes up space to replace water. If a brick uses half a quart of space, you save half a quart per flush. Hint: Since bricks can dissolve, paint it with basement water sealant.
  • Another creative way I found, and I think my grandpa applies, is making use of rain water by collecting water in rain barrels. Rain barrels come in a variety of sizes and materials. You can build them from available kits or you can buy them at home improvement stores and some nurseries. Ideally, you would configure your rooftop gutter and downspout to empty into a large rain barrel [I saw this on a Lebanese blogger today but couldn't remember which one #help], but you can also keep a barrel open to receive rain straight from the sky. You can then use that collected rain to water house plants or gardens, fill bird baths, top off swimming pools and wash the car.
  • An interesting tip also is keeping a container (such as a milk jug) under your sink and fill it with the water left from boiling pasta and eggs, then water your plants with it. (You can also add your leftover coffee to this giving your plants a great boost of nutrients which encourages blooming).
  • You should also be more aware when buying your grocceries. Buy powdered laundry and dish detergents. The liquid versions simply have water added to them, making them a waste of water, money, and packaging. In addition to that, don’t buy individually-bottled water–it takes a lot of water to make those bottles and they just end up in the trash. Reusable water bottles are much more environmentally sound (not to mention much less expensive).
  • One thing that college students like myself do is skipping a load of laundry. Once in a while, some clothing really doesn't need to be washed. In mild weather, outer shirts that were only worn briefly might need just a "fluff in the dryer" or another ironing to be perfectly ready to wear. Bachelors have also known this secret for years.
  • Only order water in a restaurant if you are going to actually drink it. How many times have you seen full water glasses left on tables from customers who have ordered an iced tea or soda instead? Next time you sit down think twice about whether you are going to drink your glass of water or ask your server to fill you halfway. You can always get a refill. If you don't plan on drinking water at all, ask your waiter not to open the bottle of water they usually get for the table. Don't worry about being rude, think about those 4,500 daily dying children instead.
So those were just a few ideas to get you going, but you can find hundreds more. 

Next time you are using water, remember that water is a resource that should benefit all humans (and other species) on Earth. Don't abuse this resource. Sharing is caring after all.


  1. This is such an amazing post. Thanks for the tips

  2. There has to be conservation of all natural resources including water.There is so much of contamination and pollution and ill abuse that it will be a dry barren earth fr the coming years possibly.The underwater lives are also dyeing.


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