By Jonathan Ng |Staff Writer|
Water consumption is a financial factor to the community here in San Bernardino, and can prove to be a very costly problem if not taken seriously.
According to the City of San Bernardino Water Department, the city uses an average of about 226 gallons of water per person each day for both residential and commercial purposes.
Citizens unaware of household appliance water consumption may consume more water than they might think.
According to the City of San Bernardino Water Department: 30–35 gallons of water is used per load of laundry, 5–8 gallons of water is used per minute in the shower, running faucets use 3–7 gallons per minute, and toilets use about 1.6 gallons per flush.
The standard morning routine of an everyday college student here at CSUSB is to wake up, take a shower, brush his or her teeth, and go to class. However, students are unaware of how much water they use just to get through the day, and they use a substantial amount.
According to a recent study done by Arizona State University, student water consumption is about 300 gallons per person per week for showers and laundry alone. Despite high variability in their responses (range: 50-500 gallons/week), their respondents used approximately twice as much as the average American uses to meet the same needs.
“The students here are affecting the future both globally and locally. If students continue to waste water like they do, the cost will start to go up to pay the bills,” said Louie Alvarado, housing facilities maintenance supervisor.
The amount of water used within CSUSB and the city of San Bernardino everyday is staggering. “Within the past year of housing, Serrano Village residents consumed over 3,000,000 gallons of water on showering alone. With the new installations of the low-flow shower heads this year, residents have consumed 1,000,000 gallons of water less, saving thousands of dollars for housing,” said Alvarado.
Other ways of conserving water are seen throughout the campus as well. The Water Conservation Demonstration Garden is an on-campus monument dedicated to the well-being of the San Bernardino environment and the idea of conserving energy.
It contains a landscape that showcases a number of the native plants of the land that have survived here for thousands of years, as well as harbors water-saving technology that harnesses the power of rain and recycles it for reuse.
According to the Water Resource Institute website, the institute is designed to encourage people to look into the past for answers about what will thrive in the San Bernardino climate while harnessing the best water conserving technology that the present holds to ensure a sustainable future.
There are ways to conserve amounts of water at home. For example, purchasing low-flow shower heads and showering for shorter periods of time can reduce water consumption significantly over time.
Washing clothes only when there is a full load, buying water-saving devices, and making a conscious effort to turn off the water when it is not in use could save a lot of money in the long run.