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How can we use water effectively

While some of us enjoy the privilege of water, at abundance, free of cost for e.g. Calcutta, others for e.g. in Delhi have to pay a small cost, and yet have a shortage of water, including other states for e.g. Rajasthan and even our so called the financial hub of India, Mumbai

Many of us as usual, might blame the government, for not being organized, corrupt, etc. etc. however, I have always believed in ‘individual contribution’ towards every project. Thats what I learnt at home and as well as at work. Ideally, if every Indian learns to use water effectively, we will not have the shortage for water at all. 

We can look into some of the following examples;

Water for bathing & shower: on an average one might want to bath twice a day, especially during hot summers, and that too when water is available. We might use an average of one bucket full of water for each bath, with an average of 20 liters of water. Lets not get into any math, but, I am sure we have an overview on the total quantity of water which Indians might need for at least one bath a day.

My point is, our toilets are constructed such that, the water we use for bath, as well as for washing our hands and feet, or clothes all goes into one drain, which is also connected to the wastage from the WC. Ideally, the water we bath with, is not as dirty as we may think it to be. We can construct our bathrooms such that, all the water we use for bathing, washing of our face, hands and feet can be collected into a container, from where we can use this same water to flush our WC, or, wash our car or bikes, or even use the same water to wash or clean the floors ... just by adding some detergent or other disinfectants for e.g. bleach.

Washing of cars and other vehicles: with a hose pipe should be discouraged, since it takes lot more water instead, we can use the water which we use to bath with, in buckets to wash our cars and vehicles. 

Washing of dishes: in running tap water must be discouraged. Instead, we can fill the tub half full of water, and collect all the used dishes etc. first, we can remove all the un-eatables and collect them into one container, this can be fed to the pets. While we can leave the soiled dishes into the tub with half full of water, for sometime, to let the grease settle down. This water too can be fed to the pets, since it will have most of the spicy taste from the food. Leaving the dishes for sometime, will remove most of the harsh grease and when we eventually get to washing the dishes, we will use less of water and as well as less of detergent too.

Similarly, we can think of ways to reuse water, into different forms, than to just use fresh clean water for activities, which can be well managed without. Water is precious. There are many who don’t get enough to drink, while there are those, who don’t value it!

Contributed by: Mohinder Pal Singh 
City: Kolkata
Country: India
Date: June 1, 2010