When compared to other European countries the UK is an incredibly high consumer of water, averaging 150 litres per day and over one tonne every week per person. If embedded water from food consumption is also included, this figure is magnified by more than 20 times.
“With population growth and continued urban development, demand for water is mounting and it’s time we started taking some responsibility,” says David Spragg at leading water technology company, Xylem.
“We depend on water throughout our day-to day lives for drinking, cooking and cleaning yet we also waste a huge amount. While many people associate the UK with rainy days, our shores actually have less water per head than many of our continental neighbours, yet our consumption levels are rising.
“Homes and businesses certainly need to make a commitment to reduce water usage and equally to reuse it wherever possible, helping to reduce bills and consumption for the longer term. In August 2013 UK Government called for water companies to consider compulsory water meters in people’s homes within water stressed areas, to help reduce consumption.
“For some homes a notable decrease in water bills and consumption levels has been seen as a result of the installation of such devices, but for others bills have risen. Ultimately we need to change our behaviour and attitudes to water consumption. Technology can help us to some extent but there is also a need for greater education. Water meters are a key example of this.
“In truth, saving money is the ultimate goal for many homeowners and as we approach winter, attention turns to switching on heating systems and how to keep the heating bills as low as possible while staying warm: simply opting for a modern efficient circulator pump can result in savings. If every UK household was to replace an inefficient circulator pump with a modern high efficiency model, it would be possible to close an entire coal-fired power station. Water savings can also be generated as taps aren’t needlessly run to get hot water.
“Similarly in larger domestic buildings where water pressure may be a challenge it is possible to upgrade from a traditional booster set to a variable speed booster set. This change can deliver energy savings of up to 50 per cent by ensuring the pump only delivers the required pressure when there is demand, unlike traditional booster sets.
“We have some way to go on the road to water and energy conservation and it’s important that we all start to take note and make a change. With significant savings potential in terms of heating and water bills there is a wider environmental case that we should all be working toward for the sake of our own futures and the generations to come.”