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1000 gallons of water a day for UK households

September 3, 2008 at 2:11 am

Water is costing us a fortune now just like gas and electricity so it might then come as a bit of a shock to some of us when we hear that, according to new figures backed by research by the environmental charity WWF, the average UK household uses up to 1000 gallons of water in only one day.

The survey examined a number of aspects of recent water consumption and has revealed some rather alarming results. Water is not only used for drinking and cleaning but also for helping crops to grow. It’s this water that is making countries such as the UK consume so many gallons per day.

When water is used to help the growth of crops for both food and textiles, and when the UK imports those goods onto its shores, the water the UK is then consuming is called ‘Virtual Water’. Each average household in the UK might only use around 30 gallons of water a day for drinking, washing and cleaning but when you add on the hundreds of gallons it takes from poorer and often much drier countries in the form of this virtual water, it reaches the thousands.

What the researchers at WWF are most concerned about is the water taken from the importing of goods from some of the world’s poorest regions, such as northern Africa and India and Pakistan. These countries are draining their lakes and rivers to feed the crops that will end up as food on the shelves and as textiles for people hundreds of miles away in countries such as the UK. It seems it’s not just carbon that has a ‘footprint’ but water now too.

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