Water on our planet
We live on a planet where roughly 70% of the surface is covered by water. Most of that is sea water, with freshwater representing approximately 2.5% of the total. Further, only 1% of our freshwater is readily accessible. Clearly, as Warren Buffett and many others have maintained, “water is the new oil”. At the Albertson Water District (AWD), we recognize that water is Earth’s most valuable natural resource, and every day we operate with this in mind.
Further, did you know that the daily demand for water in the Albertson Water District varies greatly from 1.5 million gallons (gpm) in winter months to 5 million gallons (gpm) per day in summer months? Cutting back on summer usage, especially on watering lawns which is the biggest consumption culprit, not only aids island-wide conservation efforts, but lessens stresses on your entire AWD distribution system. And you will reduce your water bill in the bargain! Help us to help you.
Some ways you can make a difference and still have a beautiful green lawn:
- Observe the rules: A Nassau County Ordinance prohibits any lawn watering between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM, since that is the time frame where water evaporates most quickly. Odd numbered homes may water only on odd-numbered days, and even-numbered homes may water only on even-numbered days.
- Leaks equate to water wasted: Many underground leaks go undetected. Test each irrigation zone for leaks and better yet, have your irrigation system tested by a professional.
- Never wait to fix a leak or damaged water line: Irrigation leaks create enormous amounts of water loss and can cause a significant increase in your water bill. A telltale sign of a leak might be noticeable soggy areas of your lawn.
- Know what you are watering: Turn the system on during the day to see what you’re watering. Re-adjust sprinkler heads that may be spraying water onto unwanted areas such as sidewalks, driveways or other concrete areas.
- Using an automatic timer? Don’t just set it and forget it. Be sure to provide for seasonal adjustments.
- Don’t jump the gun! FYI, firing up your lawn irrigation system too early while the ground is still hard can damage underground pipes. Mother’s Day is usually a safe target date.
- Slow-drip irrigation systems: These will help avoid overwatering and save money on your water bill.
- Two inches long: Keep your lawn approximately two inches long to require less water and reduce evaporation.
- Don’t overwater lawns: Most people do, and it is a waste.
Guidance from the EPA
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website also has a number of conservation tips for inside your home.