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Developing Green Products and Technologies

The Importance of Water Conservation

Although 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered with water, most of that (97%) is salt water and 2% is frozen in glaciers and ice caps, leaving only 1% for human consumption - most of which is ground water. (source: U.S. Geological Survey)

This limited resource is being stretched as populations grow and usage increases. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), while the U.S. population nearly doubled from 1950 to 2000, the demand for water tripled. “A family of four can use 400 gallons of water every day, and, on average, approximately 70% of that water is used indoors,” reports the EPA.

The EPA also states that, “At least 36 states are anticipating local, regional or statewide water shortages by 2013, even under non-drought conditions.” In arid regions, like the western United States and drought-ridden Australia — and areas where water treatment facilities are at capacity — water conservation is an important issue. With recent droughts in Atlanta, Ga. and Orme, Tenn., it's becoming an issue that everyone is increasingly aware of regardless of region.