The drought. It’s plaguing California. We’ve all heard of it. People tell us, “Save water,” “Shower less,” and “Stop eating almonds” (because apparently that uses up lots of California’s water?). But we don’t listen. We go about our daily lives unconcerned about our water usage and the disappearance of the snowpack… but maybe it’s time we actually start caring.
One-third of California’s snowpack originates from the Sierra-Nevada snowpack. Unfortunately, the snowpack is now almost non-existent. In the beginning of April 2015 it was at 5%, which is the lowest level ever recorded, and the snowpack is continuing to melt away. Combine that with the record of 2015 being the driest year in California’s recorded history, and we have some major problems. Rivers and lakes have evaporated into dust, farmers are being forced to rip our their crops, and water restrictions have been put into place. We need to understand that the drought is impacting people’s lives in scary ways, and we need to do our part to help.
According to USGS, the average person uses about 80-100 gallons of water per day in their household. However, there are very practical ways that you can do your part to save water:
- If there are any leaks around your house, get them fixed now. Leaks can waste 20 gallons of water per day!
- Take shorter showers! If you decrease your shower time by 3 minutes per day, you could save around 3,000 gallons of water per year.
- Only use your washing machine and dishwasher when you have a full load, and always use the most eco-friendly mode.
- If you drop ice cubes in your kitchen or have a half empty bottle of water laying around, don’t dump it in the sink- water a plant with them instead!
- Guys: if you run some water into the sink and plug it to rinse your razors instead of letting the water run, you could save 300 gallons of water per month!
- Girls: while shaving in the shower, try turning off the water and turning it back on momentarily to rinse your razor.
Turn off the running shower water while lathering your hair. This could save up to 150 gallons a month!
The drought is something that needs to be taken extremely seriously. It is affecting the livability of California, our everyday routines, and the way we use water. In order to keep California the beautiful state that we love so much, we must all do our part to conserve water in the midst of this drought.
You can make a difference.