Let's list here things we can do to reduce our water usage and help prevent a "tragedy of the commons".
- Take a shower with a family member
- Don't shower every day (adult skin dries out from frequent showers).
- Only wash full loads
- If your washer/dishwasher has the option, use the 'quick wash' setting. Most loads don't need a full cycle.
- Install a gray water system for irrigation. Gray water is water that has been used for washing (drains from sink, washer, bath, shower). Simple versions are keeping a bucket in the shower or hooking up a tank to the washer drain. Since we pay for water and sewer separately in Pleasanton, a professionally installed whole-house gray water system can pay for itself rather quickly.
- If you haven't already done so, replace all shower heads, toilets, faucets with low-gallon versions.
- Reduce the amount of dishes that need washing by serving food right out of the pot/pan instead of putting it in a serving dish.