Here in our home state of California, our water situation is bad. Like, really, really bad. Over the past four years alone, we’ve gone from a portion of California being abnormally dry to having nearly the entire state facing exceptional drought. Even NASA thinks we only have enough water for a year. So, it may feel a bit like the sky is falling (even though nothing is falling from the sky).
But there’s hope.
There are actions — large and small — that everyone can take the help conserve water. In honor of Earth Day and our #WashLessPledge, we asked our employees to share their favorite water-saving tips. If you’re looking for a few ideas to shrink your environmental footprint this Earth Day (and every day, for that matter), try adding a couple of these tricks to your repertoire:
Go with the flow.
The average American family of four uses 400 gallons of water per day, according to the EPA. On average, approximately 70 percent of that water is used indoors, with the bathroom being the largest consumer (a toilet alone can use 27 percent!). One employee installed low-flow/low-water faucets, shower heads and toilets in her house to minimize her family’s impact.
Don’t let an opportunity to reuse water go down the drain. Instead get creative about how you can reuse it. Our employees capture water when they’re cooking and showering and use it to water outside plants and flush the toilet.
Twist the tap to the right.
“It’s not rocket science, but every little bit helps: I turn the water off when I’m washing my face.” Turn off your faucet when brushing your teeth, shaving or washing your hands. Seriously, it’s that simple.
Enjoy modern-day conveniences.
Did you know that a fully loaded dishwasher uses less water than scrubbing by hand? Pretty great, right? You can save more than 20 gallons per load and two and a half times the energy. Those without a dishwasher say they use the tap only to rinse dishes (instead of filling the sink and letting the water run while scrubbing).
Drop the drip.
A leaky faucet is not only painfully annoying but our employees know it’s also a serious waste of water. A single tap that drips every six seconds wastes 3 liters of water per day. That’s enough to fill your water bottle and enjoy a long hike on the weekend. Leaky toilets are common leak offenders too. The good news is you don’t have to be a plumber to detect a leak. Simply splash several drops of food coloring in the tank, wait a few minutes and check to see if the bowl has changed colors (we recommend green coloring to help you get in the Earth Day spirit).
Get to know the natives.
Mother Nature knows best. One employee ditched her green grass and replaced it with drought-resistant landscaping. Planting native species instead of foliage will save you both time and water. Google “xeriscaping” — drought-friendly landscaping can be stunning.
Wash less, wash cold, line dry.
This one may come as no surprise, but many of our employees (CEO included) are pretty passionate about washing less. Levi’s jeans are stylish and durable, and they’re designed to be broken-in naturally. So why break it down with unnecessary washing and drying? To see how much water and energy you could save by changing your laundry habits, take this quiz. Then pledge to wash less (or not at all!), and encourage your friends, family and those in your social networks to do the same.
OK, we hope you’re feeling empowered to make a difference. If you have any other favorite water-saving tips, share them with us on Twitter (@LeviStraussCo)!