What Are You Doing to Conserve Water?

Readers discuss the drought.


Tyson Harris: The biggest thing I’d say I work on is my own personal use of water. I’ve become more aware that we Americans use resources very liberally and waste resources without giving it a second thought. So I think all the focus on the water crisis in California has helped me think about our overall use of resources, not just water.

Ian Davis: At my house, we’re definitely doing things like taking shorter showers, and when we do the laundry, we try to squeeze as much into one load as possible. Really just trying to conserve. I’ve read about some small towns in California that are already receiving water rationing, and my concern is definitely that that will come to the Bay Area. I think most people aren’t too concerned about it, maybe because they don’t notice the immediate effects. When people are turning on their faucets and everything runs just fine, they say, ‘Oh, OK, I see it right here. I hear about the drought, but I’ll believe it when I see it.’ And I fear that, one day, they’ll find out it’s very real.

Maya Songbird: I’m mindful of it. I’m not the kind of person who just runs water—I get my ass in the shower quickly and I get back out. I try and wash dishes fast, and things like that. As far as drinking it, I love Oakland tap water, so I’m a little heartbroken about not being able to indulge as much as I used to, because I hate drinking water out of plastic and getting cancer, like everyone else. I don’t like that my son has to grow up in an area where he has to deal with the drought—we’re very mindful of it. You know how it says in the Bible that God said he will never flood the earth again? He never said he wouldn’t drought the earth.

Melissa Hyams: When I’m washing my hair in the sink, I don’t let the water run down the sink; I collect it. This is something that I’ve become aware of. That’s the kind of thing I have to do, but I just moved here from Illinois, and I haven’t been here long enough for it to have a similar impact on my life. We’re having a drought in the Midwest, too, so it’s not unfamiliar to me, though, believe it or not. Back in Illinois, we’re also trying to bring back native plants that don’t consume water, and get rid of lawns, and such.

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