Last June our average water use was about 110 litres per person per day. Now it’s down to about 81. The UK average is 150 per person per day. There was a blip in between – we had a leak last autumn.
And we’d never have spotted it if we hadn’t been monitoring. So taking the readings, and then doing something with them (plotting them), has been really worthwhile.
Even so, it was hard to pin down the leak until the end of the busy season when most people went home and the water consumption for the four of us looked enormous!
Since then we’ve been keeping a close eye on things. The leak was fixed around the end of November.
The points are the average useage per person per night for each month. When they’re averaged, it comes out at 81 litres per person per day. The average for the UK as a whole is 150 litres per person per day(Waterwise 2011 – see link below).
OK, so people don’t do much clothes washing here (though we offer a shared machine). But these winter bookings do include bed linen, laundered on site. And since winter breaks are often weekends, that can mean sheets washed for just a two night stay. Our efficient washing machine helps, as do the low flow rates in the accommodation, and the (recycled) water butts for outside water use.
It’s not that water is scarce in Devon. But it still all has to be cleaned up before we use it (even for clothes washing). And for most people it has to be taken away and cleaned up again via the sewage system afterwards (we’re on private drainage here).
Water consumption per person is rising (by about 1 per cent a year), and as population grows there’s more and more demand. Where Maggie grew up in Sussex, wetlands have already disappeared. We don’t want that to happen here in Devon.
Here’s a link to more about reducing water wastage in the UK.