Why save water?


November’s CampUS Challenge theme is water… but why is saving water important?

Why save water?

“Water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink”

You may think that with the amount of water we get in the United Kingdom that we would have more than enough water to provide the country. But the truth is, the South East of England has less water available per person than Sudan and Syria and London is drier than Istanbul!

“The South East of England has less water available per person than Sudan and Syria”

On average, each person uses 150 litres of water a day, this takes into account cooking, cleaning, washing and flushing but not the water required to produce your goods including clothes and food.

The facts from Waterwise

  • A running tap uses 6 litres of water a minute
  • A shower can use anywhere between 9-45 litres of water per minute
  • A hosepipe uses as much as 1,000 litres per hour
  • An old toilet can use 14 litres per flush compared to a dual flush which use as little as 2.6 and 4 litres per flush

How can you save water?

There are lots of ways that you can save water – here are some of them

  • Turn the tap off when you brush your teeth – if everyone in the UK did this, we would save 446 million litres of water
  • Use leftover water in glasses to water plants – this will avoid water being poured down the sinkhole
  • Ask your water company for a “Save a Flush” device or similar – these displace water by around 1-3 litres per flush

As mentioned earlier, water is also embedded in the products that we buy – if you include this embedded water, our actual consumption is 3,400 litres per day!

Around 65% of the water that we consume is embedded in our food; an apple has around 70 litres of water embedded into it, a pint of beer about 170 litres and a hamburger has 2,400 litres!

To find out more about how much embedded water is in the products you buy, look at this infographic from National Geographic.

Don’t forget to send us your water saving photos at sustainability@qmul.ac.uk or tag us on social media.

To find out more about how the photograph competition works, read our CampUS photo instructions.


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