Last month was chock-full of events intended to promote awareness of water issues. National Groundwater Awareness Week ran from March 8 to 14, with World Plumbing Day taking the spotlight on March 11. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) seventh annual Fix a Leak Week took place March 16 to 22, leading up to World Water Day on March 22.
Despite being run by different organizations and focusing on different aspects of the water industry, all of these events were connected by a common thread—they all encouraged a focus on water conservation and efficiency.
Fix a Leak Week, of course, sponsored by EPA’s WaterSense program, always focuses on these themes by encouraging homeowners to ensure that all of their plumbing fixtures are free from leaks, which can waste an estimated 1 trillion gal of water or more per year across the nation. Sudhakaran Nair, chairman of World Plumbing Day sponsor the World Plumbing Council, encouraged a focus this year on what he termed the “software” of plumbing—the need to change attitudes about water so that it becomes second nature to practice water conservation techniques. The National Ground Water Assn. encouraged the use of water-efficient appliances and repairing leaks in addition to protecting groundwater from contaminants during National Groundwater Awareness Week. World Water Day’s theme this year was “Water and Sustainable Development”—meaning water conservation was a key component.
So many organizations and events pushing for water conservation and efficiency awareness only reinforces the fact that all facets of the water industry are permanently interconnected. Ultimately, all of these efforts are working toward the same goal: ensuring water sustainability for the future.
While it’s important to continue promoting awareness of water conservation and efficiency through events such as Fix a Leak Week and World Water Day, it is also key to think in the long term. When it comes to water efficiency, every little effort does count—but ongoing practice of water-saving habits and continued application of water efficiency and water reuse technologies will have the greatest impact.
Spurred by ongoing drought in many areas of the country and encouraged by programs such as WaterSense, Americans are becoming increasingly aware of the need to conserve water. The time to act is now—and we all need to work together to ensure a sustainable water future.