Donald Trump’s decision to single-handedly derail the US’ involvement in the Paris Agreement has been widely condemned by world leaders. In light of the loss of the world’s second biggest contributor of carbon emissions, there has been a surge to secure the environmental prosperity of the planet in its absence. In light of the WWF’s revelations that a quarter of the UK’s rivers are at risk of drying up then, it is surprising that the government has neglected to move to address this issue more swiftly. Especially because, as recently as 2016, the Committee on Climate Change advised the government that even modest temperature rises would lead to severe water shortages in Britain.
With or without the support of the government, it is clear that something needs to be done. How then, can we mere mortals, possibly help to avert this catastrophe? Well, saving water is a start and there are a number of ways to do this, giving everyone the opportunity to be involved, in whatever capacity that may be.
Household Decision Support System
A collaboration between specialists in the fields of water management and ICT yielded an impressive result – an integrated support system for efficient water usage. A wireless device detects the water usage of various appliances within the home, and a mobile app relays the results directly to the homeowner.
Broken down by appliance, the app makes suggestions as to how the owner may be able to reduce their consumption. In this way, the UDSS moves beyond the mere guilt-inducing effect that the performance of a pedometer is reliant on, and gives you viable suggestions to implement.
Fixing leaky pipes
A shocking 20% of all piped water is lost to leaks before water even reaches homes – and all while water companies are placing more and more emphasis on customers recouping these losses by cutting down on water usage. Thames Water, to demonstrate just one example, was fined £8.5 million for failing to reduce leakage of water in accordance with the targets they had agreed.
Obviously, there is a problem here. While the blame evidently lies with the water companies, there are ways you can prevent leaky pipes in your own home hampering your water usage. By digitally self-regulating pressure automatically, investing in a Flamco pressurisation unit can prevent your pipes from bursting and leaking water.
There is no doubt about it; reclaiming water will help to prevent Britain’s rivers drying up. Wastewater processing gives a second life to otherwise unusable water by altering its composition. Phosphorus is extracted from sewage to be used as a fertiliser for crops whilst nitrogen is removed from wastewater, safe to be released back into rivers.
Sometimes it needn’t be so complicated. In the case of grey water (water from the likes of bathroom sinks and shower drains) it can be re-distributed for use in irrigation – no treatment required – just sensible reuse.
More and more genuinely viable options for reducing water usage are popping up every day, as the emergence of the House Decision Support System app shows, and their proper implementation is the best way to reduce the burden on the environment. Not only does it help save the planet, it also saves you money. More importantly though, it will help to prevent Britain’s rivers running dry, which is as important an achievement as any.