Water is an important source of life for every organism on Earth. While we drink, play, and clean with it every day, many people don’t know much about the versatile resource we rely on to survive.
In our latest blog, the experts at Indiana American Water have put together eight important facts about water to help you understand the significance of this natural resource and why it’s more important than ever to participate in water conservation practices.
Learn more about our services at indianaamwater.com and be sure to check out our other blogs for more information on how to protect your local water supply.
1. About 97% of the Water on Earth is Undrinkable
While Earth is a planet abundant with natural water sources, most of it can’t be used as drinking water because it’s salt water. Oceans and seas make up the largest bodies of water, leaving only 3.5% of Earth’s water fresh enough to drink.
Unfortunately, we don’t have easy access to all the freshwater. About 1% comes from lakes, rivers, streams, and groundwater, and can be used for our agriculture, manufacturing, and tap water. According to the EPA, the other roughly 2% is frozen in ice caps and glaciers across the globe.
With such a limited natural freshwater supply, it’s imperative to protect this important resource from pollution and overconsumption.
2. The Average American Uses About 50 Gallons of Water Each Day
American citizens have some of the highest water usage rates in the world. About 24% of an individual’s total daily usage comes from flushing the toilet and about 20% from showers and bathing. The EPA states another 19% comes from our faucets and about 17% from doing laundry in a washing machine.
On the bright side, there are many simple ways each U.S. citizen can easily reduce their water usage, and as a result, their water waste. Don’t overfill your bathtubs or take unnecessarily long showers, turn off the faucet when you’re not using the water directly like while brushing your teeth, and invest in water saving, energy-efficient appliance such as a dishwasher instead of washing dishes by hand in the sink.
3. A Drop of Ocean Water is Home to Millions of Organisms
Yes, you read that right. Millions of bacteria, viruses, fish eggs, baby crabs, plankton, and even small worms can all live together in a single drop of ocean water.
This startingly statistic shows the true power of water. With millions of organisms living in just one drop of water, and hundreds of millions of drops of water in our oceans, it’s easy to see how Earth’s bodies of water are the largest source of life on the planet.
4. A Minor Faucet Drip Can Waste Up to 20 Gallons of Water Per Day
Other in-home leaks can use even more water – a leaking toilet can waste more than 22,000 gallons per year. That’s more than enough to fill an average in-ground swimming pool!
Reduce your average total home water usage simply by regularly checking your plumbing fixtures and equipment for leaks and getting them fixed by a professional as soon as possible.
5. We Drink the Same Water as the Dinosaurs Drank
Well, most likely. You see, Earth is a closed atmosphere, meaning matter is rarely lost or gained. Thanks to our natural water cycle, the world’s water molecules are the same as they were thousands or even millions of years ago.
The water cycle starts when liquid water from lakes, rivers, and other bodies, evaporates up into the atmosphere where it stays as small droplets or water vapor. When the vapor is cooled, it slowly transforms back into liquid water and is stored in clouds until it becomes too heavy. Then, the clouds expel the water as precipitation back to Earth’s surface.
6. Growing 1 ounce of Almonds Uses 80 gallons of Water
According to the Water Education Foundation, producing some of our favorite foods uses more water than any other human activity. Growing 1 cup of lettuce uses 3 gallons of water, 1 slice of whole wheat bread requires 7 gallons, and it takes a whopping 46 gallons to make only .36 ounces of butter.
With these rates, it’s important for the world’s supply of water that Indiana residents partake in sustainable shopping and agriculture practices. Try to buy local produce that saves energy on transportation and only offers in-season foods. And, don’t purchase food you don’t need, as food waste is directly related to water waste.
7. Water is Naturally Found in all Three States of Matter
On Earth, water is the only substance that we’ve found naturally occurring in all three states of matter – solid, liquid, and gas. Water exists as a liquid as our drinking water, in lakes, streams, and oceans. It is in gas form as vapor when it evaporates into the atmosphere, and it’s solid as frozen water in ice cubes and glaciers.
8. Water Can Regulate Your Body Temperature
While water helps regulate the Earth’s temperature, it can do the same for the human body. Water is an important tool for carrying nutrients and oxygen through your body to each of your cells. It also helps protect your organs, cushions joints and is a key part of clearing waste and toxins from your body.
While the human brain and body are each made up of about 75% of water, we constantly require clean drinking water to survive. Experts recommend drinking about 6-8 glasses of water, or according to Harvard Health about 15.5 cups for men and 11.5 cups for women. Dehydration can pose a serious health risk, and a person can only live about 1 week without any water compared to about a month without food.
Trusted Water Education Resources from Indiana American Water
At Indiana American Water, we’re committed to providing Indiana residents with fresh, clean water for drinking, cleaning, and recreation. We understand the importance of water for your safety and happiness. That’s why we’ve dedicated our knowledge and expertise to educating Indiana residents on water conservation and facilitating conservation initiatives across the State.
Contact Indiana American Water to learn more about how you can positively impact your local water supply.