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Teach Your Goldfish to Save Water


With diminishing supplies and growing demand, the need to conserve water has never been greater. Around your home, this typically means using low-flow showerheads, low-flush toilets and faucet aerators, as well as efficient washing machines and dishwashers. So here are some not-so-typical ways to save our earth’s most precious resource.

The next time you visit a grocery store to pick up the night’s dinner, you may want to think twice about the ‘water footprint’ of the food you’re buying. That’s the amount of water it takes to raise a particular animal or grow a specific plant. For instance, it takes a lot more water to raise cattle for beef than it does to raise chickens. And mangoes? Believe it or not, that tasty fruit consumes considerably more water than the ever-popular nectarine.

Moving into the kitchen, thanks to everyday cleaning, washing, cooking and drinking, this is where over 10% of a home’s water consumption happens. Here are a few ways to slow the flow on that number:

  • Clean fruit and veggies in a pot of water instead of under running waterBrand_Chile_in_water
  • Keep using the same water glass throughout the day
  • Use less water by steaming foods, when possible, instead of boiling them
  • When boiling veggies, reuse the water for cooking up a stock
  • Wait to run the dishwasher until it is fully loaded and don’t pre-rinse
  • When washing dishes by hand, use less liquid soap, which will reduce the amount of rinsing needed
  • Avoid running tap water until it’s cool enough to drink by collecting it in a bottle and storing it in the fridge   
  • While waiting for tap water to warm up or cool down, catch it in a container to water plants
  • Cut down on your water and garbage-disposal use by putting food scraps in the compost
  • Instead of running water over frozen food, place it in the refrigerator to defrost overnight
  • Fix a leaky faucet you can save from over 8 to 50 gallons of water a day

And as far as that pet goldfish of yours is concerned, you can save a lot of water the next time you’re cleaning out the tank. Instead of letting all that old nitrogen and phosphorous-rich water go down the drain, use it on your nutrient-hungry plants. Not only will your fish and plants thank you, the whole planet will too.