Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

How Much Water Do You Use Each Day?

How Much Water Do You Use Each Day?

Marketplace's Sustainability Desk Correspondent Scott Tong asked his listeners yesterday to "try to imagine a ticker, or counter, that tallies all your water use: every cup of coffee, every shower, every flush." Well that's what Tong did to find out his family's water footprint.

Americans consume more water per capita than anyone else on the planet.
Photo credit: Shutterstock

But, before actually finding out how much water his family used each day, he decided to guess. He guessed 500 gallons for him, his wife and three children. He then solicited estimates via Twitter and Facebook to see what others thought a typical family of five consumed in water each day.

The median guess was 225 gallons a day with the lowest estimate at 30 and the highest at 5,000. Here's a tweet by Tong showing the responses:

Tong did a little research for context before finding out his family's water usage and learned that the "United Nation's estimate for a bare minimum a person needs to drink, bathe and clean is 13 gallons a day."

He also discovered that Americans consume more water per capita than anyone else on the planet and as Stanford University’s Newsha Ajami told Tong, American water is underpriced. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the national average cost of water is $2 for 1,000 gallons.

This chart shows how the U.S. compares to other countries in domestic use of water and the tariff price in dollars per one thousand gallons:

So how much water does the Tong family use on average per day? 310 gallons according to his house water meter. And as Tong said, "310 gallons. It’s not bad for an American family of five. But it’s a ton of water (1.15 tons, to be precise). And that one ton for one day costs $1.30. Put another way: It’s about the price of one bottle of water."

Tong explores many other aspects of our water consumption in his Counting gallons: How much water do you use? segment. Listen here:

Want to calculate your water footprint? Check out the water footprint calculator on the GRACE Communications Foundation's website.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

8 Shocking Facts About Water Consumption

Can’t Find Someone to Shower With to Reduce Your Water Usage? Try the Waterpebble

Stop the War Against the Colorado River

Map shows tracks and strength of Atlantic tropical cyclones in 2020. Blues are tropical depressions and tropical storms; yellow through red show hurricanes, darker shades meaning stronger ones. Master0Garfield / Wikimedia Commons

By Astrid Caldas

As we reach the official end of hurricane season, 2020 will be one for the record books. Looking back at these long, surprising, sometimes downright crazy past six months (seven if you count when the first named storms actually started forming), there are many noteworthy statistics and patterns that drive home the significance of this hurricane season, and the ways climate change may have contributed to it.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Protesters shouting slogans on megaphones during the climate strike on September 25 in Lisbon, Portugal. Hugo Amaral / SOPA Images / LightRocket / Getty Images

By Dana Drugmand

An unprecedented climate lawsuit brought by six Portuguese youths is to be fast-tracked at Europe's highest court, it was announced today.

The European Court of Human Rights said the case, which accuses 33 European nations of violating the applicants' right to life by disregarding the climate emergency, would be granted priority status due to the "importance and urgency of the issues raised."

Read More Show Less

Trending

A child plays with a planet Earth ball during the Extinction Rebellion Strike in London on Apr. 18, 2019. Brais G. Rouco / SOPA Images / LightRocket / Getty Images

Will concern over the climate crisis stop people from having children?

Read More Show Less

By Liz Kimbrough

Six grassroots environmental activists will receive the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize in a virtual ceremony this year. Dubbed the "Green Nobel Prize," this award is given annually to environmental heroes from each of the world's six inhabited continents.

Read More Show Less
Mount Ili Lewotolok spews ash during a volcanic eruption in Lembata, East Nusa Tenggara on November 29, 2020. Joy Christian / AFP / Getty Images

A large volcano in Indonesia erupted Sunday, sending a plume of smoke and ash miles into the air and forcing thousands of residents to evacuate the region.

Read More Show Less