Carbon Footprint of Water


Carbon Footprint of Water

We can all agree that decisions we tend to make when it comes to the management of energy and water resources are affecting our environmental as well as economic future.

Since the climate change and other issues may arise and limit the availability of cheap energy and clean water, the idea is to find ways to reduce that or to calculate the percentage of carbon footprint so that you can determine how to handle the amount of freshwater we are continually spending.

Have in mind that large quantities of energy is required so that we can supply, treat and use water daily, which means that water strategies can result in lower energy usage as well as carbon and greenhouse gas emissions that may affect the world that surrounds us.

According to comprehensive reports, you should have in mind that carbon emissions will also affect the environment, so our primary goals are to determine the overall value of carbon footprint of water so that you can know how to reduce it and therefore protect the environment in the long run.

In this particular article, we have created a baseline as well as the estimate of water energy usage in the USA throughout its lifecycle as well as an overview of energy consumption that happens during the water supplies as well as end uses.

Therefore, you can implement a water management strategy that will protect your freshwater resources and reduce carbon emissions and energy expenses.

This information is valid and helpful because with it you will be able to help watershed groups and river, water managers, policymakers and people that are consuming plenty of water to understand the importance, which is related to energy use for water production from cradle to the grave.

Water-Related Energy Consumption in the USA

According to statistics and general data that will present you the consumption percentage, the water-related energy consumption is at least 520 million MWh a year, which means that it uses enough energy equivalent to 13% of nation's electricity consumption in the same period.

We can easily say that this particular estimate of water-related energy consumption would create a severe carbon footprint, which is associated with transporting, treating, heating, and doing other industrial features in the USA.

Carbon footprint is approximately 290 million metric tons on an annual basis, which is five percent of the entire carbon emission percentage in the USA. This particular number is equivalent to emissions of 70 coal-fired power plants.

At the same time, the carbon footprint of water usage is growing as time goes by for a few reasons. The first one includes climate changes that created numerous side effects on freshwater resources, which means that water that surrounds us is not as reliable as before.

Since the water demand is growing as time goes by on local, national and international levels, people are finding alternative and remote water sources, which require more energy and leave more carbon emissions than the first ones.

According to experts, it is vital to adopt higher water treatment standards on both federal and state levels, but that will also increase carbon and energy costs for treating wastewater as well as the tap one.

The processes such as water conservation, efficiency as well as reuse strategies should be implemented with an idea to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

According to experts, water management strategies can quickly achieve energy savings that are comparable with other energy conservation methods.

Have in mind that water management regulations can easily promote efficiency, water conservation, as well as low impact development that will reduce carbon emissions due to lowering energy demand required for water consumption.

The overall energy savings has a high potential when it comes to assessing problems in the future. Have in mind that numerous studies have shown that saving energy is an efficient way to improve the environment in general.

The best ways to save water are:

  1. You can retrofit the water by using appliances and fixtures that will reduce water consumption and usage for 20% approximately.
  2. In case that every household installs efficient appliances and fixtures, the hot water consumption will be reduced for 4.5 billion gallons on an annual basis. At the same time, energy savings are significant as well and you will be able to save approximately 41 million MWh electricity, as well as 250 billion cubic feet of natural gas, which will ultimately lead to a reduction of carbon emissions for 39 million metric tons.
  3. You can reduce outdoor irrigation that happens during summer months, which will result in upstream energy savings as well as water consumption from supplies that you need. When you reduce the water distribution system leakage for five percent, you will be able to save 279 MGD of water overall.
  4. You can save 310 million kWh of electricity yearly, which is equal to the electricity consumption of 33 thousand homes. Apart from that, you will be able to reduce 230 thousand tons of carbon emissions, which will improve overall environmental health. In case that groundwater levels across the USA tend to drop of 10 feet due to energy demands, unsustainable water withdrawals as well as irrigation demands due to agricultural groundwater pumping, you will be able to save 1 million MWh per year.

How To Preserve Water?

Save Tap Water

The first thing that you should do if you wish to preserve water inside your household is to avoid running tap water for a long time. Therefore, when you are washing up or brushing your teeth, you should turn it off, since the average speed tends to be 12 liters per minute. In case that you have a leaking faucet, you will be able to save 120 liters daily, which is why you should regularly check out everything so that you can ensure that fixtures are correctly working.

Clean Home Without Chemistry

Some products such as chemical detergent as well as washing powders or liquids feature inability to get absorbed by wastewater, which means that you will have to use the tap water instead. At the same time, these chemicals are carried away to rivers and lakes and pollute them, which mean that you will affect the ecosystems around you. Therefore, you should avoid using chemical products that may affect the irrigation system in general.


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