Roosevelt Water Association           

Why Conserve Water

People often have a hard time understanding why we need to conserve water. After all, how could there be a water shortage in the rainy Pacific Northwest?

Demand peaks when supply is lowest
Our demand is at the highest when our supply is at the lowest. In the summertime, water demand can be twice that of the yearly average because of summer uses such as lawn watering, car washing, and swimming pool filling. But supplies are at their lowest in the summer because our water supply comes from rain and snowmelt, both of which are minimal in the summer.

Demand is growing
The demand for water is growing due to increasing human population and better addressing of environmental needs. Snohomish County is one of the fastest growing counties in Washington State. The county is expected to grow 42% between 2000 and 2020. More people means more demand for water for domestic, business, industrial, and agricultural uses. There are many animal and plant species that also depend on adequate amounts of water. We need to ensure that as we take water for human needs, we leave sufficient amounts for non-human uses. Endangered salmon are just one example of these non-human uses for water.

Conservation saves money
Many homeowners and businesses can save money directly by conserving water since all businesses and some homes are billed by the amount of water used. Your sewer and electricity bill can also decrease since they are tied in part to water consumption.

A new water supply
There are only two ways to get more water. First, we can develop new sources by traditional methods such as building more surface water dams and drilling new groundwater wells. But these methods are expensive, and itís difficult to find new sources that havenít already been spoken for. Second, we can encourage people to conserve water and use that conserved water as a new supply. Conservation has been shown to be less expensive than developing traditional supply sources.

Saving water saves energy
Water and energy are tied together in two ways. First, it takes energy to get water to individual homes and business. The Water Filtration Plant and transmission system, which ensure that we have clean water, both run on energy. Second, any hot water you use is heated through energy use. So taking a shorter shower, running a full dishwasher, and washing fewer loads of clothes not only save water, but save energy also.

Good stewards
Itís important that we each do our part to use water wisely. Water is a limited resource that we must manage carefully to ensure adequate quantities for growing human and environmental needs. Only one percent of the worldís water supply is available fresh water; the rest is saltwater, ice caps, and glaciers. And there are plenty of competing demands for that one percent, including domestic, business, industry, agriculture, and environmental uses. With so much demand, and so little supply, itís crucial that we are good stewards of our water resources.

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