AUSTRALIANS KNOW a thing or two about saving water. As England enters its worst drought in more than 30 years, the country could certainly be taught a few lessons from its Commonwealth friends Down Under.
Drought has been declared across much of England including Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire and parts of Bedfordshire and Northampton. Water companies have warned rainfall is needed in the winter months to minimise the problems in summer. There are different types of droughts, with various causes and effects. Learn more about how it affects us with these drought facts.
Thames Water is responsible for supplying 2.6 million litres of tap water to almost 9 million people per day across London and the Thames Valley. It has a four-stage process in place to deal with drought.
The first, and most ironic is a hosepipe ban – no more cleaning cars at home, soaking lawns or washing patios. Wait. You mean we can’t throw water around willy nilly like it endlessly falls out of the sky?
The use of hosepipes at home should be banned in all countries all-year-round, or at the very least should always be used with a trigger nozzle. Thames Water estimates using a bucket to wash your car can save up to 125 litres of water. But it needs to go further.
One English scribe last week mooted the idea of saving water by “leaving the yellow to mellow” (that Meet the Fockers-esque method of not flushing the loo after ‘number 1’s’).
Living on the driest inhabited continent on the planet, one tends to pick up a trick or two about the importance of saving water. Needless to say flushing after every few ‘number 1’s’ is most certainly not one of them.
The Hard Word once lived in a region that has been forced to live with water restrictions for many, many years. Permanent water saving plans still remain in place even on the back of years of above average rainfall. I am the first to admit that Australia is one of the most over-legislated countries in the world, but when it comes to saving water this can be no bad thing.
Residents here in the UK, especially in the south, should be forced to comply with a number of water saving measures for 12 months of the year. Watering gardens should only ever be allowed early in the morning and late in the evening. Water-saving showerheads should be compulsory and leaking taps should be addressed quickly. Showers should be shortened, taps shouldn’t be left running when brushing teeth or washing dishes and double-flush toilets should be phased in to all homes. This is a way of life in Australia.
It’s about a change in attitude, not helped by one rather high-profile Mayor who last year decried at the prospect of drought, “How can we tell people that they can’t have baths, when they only have to step outside to be soaked to the skin?”
It is one of the more remarkable comments I’ve ever heard from a (largely) intelligent mind. If this absurd remark is representative of an entire country’s attitude towards this critical issue, heaven forbid.
This is not about nanny-state living, nor is it a scare campaign driven by the global-warming doomsdayers. It’s merely recognition of the fact that water isn’t always of endless supply.
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