How individuals and businesses are one and the same when it comes to ‘green issues’

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Commercial water treatments vs residential water treatmentsI don’t know about you, but I love awareness campaigns.

You get campaigns for health conditions, animal or human rights and even fun things like popcorn day or Winnie the Pooh day!

Recently I’ve noticed how many campaigns are dedicated to water.

The International Day of Action for Rivers and Against Dams celebrates the world’s rivers and those who struggle to protect them. It educates us about the threats facing our rivers so we can learn about better water and energy solutions.

World Water Day is an annual event celebrated on March 22. The day focuses on the importance of fresh water and advocates for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. This year, interest was so strong, there was an entire Water Action Month during March.

Just last week, a first took place for United Nations climate change conferences. A special day was devoted to action on water issues, providing stakeholders an opportunity spotlight water as a way of providing solutions to help implement the Paris Agreement.

And who can fail to notice recent news stories about Donald Trump’s thoughts on climate change? He is reported to have said that he doesn’t believe global warming is a real threat to the USA and that “global warming was something China had invented to reduce the profitability of US companies.”

Whether or not climate change is a real threat, one thing we can be sure of is that as the world population increases, there will be less of everything to go around. Which is why preserving our natural resources is a no brainer. It’s also why these campaigns reach everyone, from an individual householder to the CEO of a large company. I run an awareness campaign myself; it’s about reducing landfill waste. Businesses approach me and ask how they can get involved and really it’s the same for an individual as a business.

Why? Because what affects you at home, on a personal level can be scaled up to affect a large business. Although there will be subtle differences, the end-goal is the same. And I find that to be true of so many ‘green issues’.

Take the idea of comparing Commercial water treatments vs residential water treatments.

Commercial water treatment systems have traditionally relied heavily on chemical additives to dose into systems. Many of these chemicals are toxic to both human and environmental health in high concentrations and cumulative low concentrations.

Between commercial and residential water treatments, there are similar problems in both health and safety handling and exposure limits, as well as the requirements of skilled operators to dispense chemical treatments effectively. In manual dosing systems unless the treatment stream is frequently and accurately monitored there is a tendency to inadvertently over or under dose as unknown fluctuations occur in the treatment stream. The downside is that operators tend to utilise compensatory adjustments that can further exasperate the neutralisation and balancing effect.

Chemical dosing via pumped dosing and monitoring systems also requires frequent maintenance and component checks due to the corrosive effect of the chemicals used. If a dosing system is automated, there is an tendency to ‘set and forget’ until an alarm sounds somewhere, at which point the system may already be compromised. It is not uncommon to see dosing systems with leaking equipment, corroded controls and uncalibrated monitoring sensors.

For both homes and businesses, water treatment systems must be both flexible and dynamic to adjust to the flux and variables.

You only have to look at the fact we’re all carrying around smartphones to realise technology has changed. Chemical dosing although effective can no longer accommodate the stringent requirements for both environmental and modern industrial needs. There is an ever demanding need to protect and preserve our most precious global resource … water.

Saving water is a global challenge. Here are five simple tips to stop wasting water:

  • Fix that drip. If you have a leaking tap you could be wasting 4 litres of water per day.
  • Fill a plastic bottle with water and place it in your toilet cistern to reduce the amount of water you use when you flush.
  • Pee in the shower! I loved this statistic from MIC: A standard toilets use 1.6 gallons of water per flush. If you take your first pee of the day when you’re in the shower, those water savings will soon add up!
  • Only operate dishwashers and washing machines when you have a full load.
  • Waiting for the hot tap to warm up or the cold tap to cool down? Gather the water and use it on your plants.

What about you. How do you preserve water at home and in your place of work? Find out more ideas with the National Geographic.

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