What can businesses do to save water!
Various reports have indicated that South Africa is facing a severe water crisis because of the current drought conditions. The country could run the risk of facing critical shortages of clean drinking water by 2025. A number of Municipalities around the country have already implemented water restrictions to help mitigate the water crisis.
Sanjeev Orie, CEO of FNB Business Values Adds points out that if dramatic steps are not taken to change our behaviour to curb water usage; small and medium size businesses are likely to pay the price. He says, “water is one of the biggest constraints to development and water conservation should be everyone’s responsibility.”
“Every business uses water differently and it is essential that businesses start to invest in water saving solutions to reduce water usage while still reaching all of its business needs. “
Orie shares five water wise interventions that businesses can adopt to help sustain this declining resource.
Get a water audit.
Companies that use massive amounts of water should consider getting professional help or a conservation specialist in reducing their water consumption. A water audit will help maximise business water use efficiency and provides information on where opportunities lie for saving money and using less water.
Engage and inform employees.
Every employee plays a role in water usage, so this is a prime opportunity to get employees involved in the business’s efforts to be water wise. Creating a workplace culture that focuses and takes pride in efficiency can be a very beneficial factor of a water conservation plan.
Invest in recycling and rainwater harvesting technology.
Recycling and rainwater harvesting technology essentially is the collection, storage and continuous use of rainwater, as either a main or an alternative source of water. Effective recycling and rainwater harvesting has multiple benefits which encourages businesses to depend less on piped municipal water and start to rely more on sustainable cost effective water supply options.
Install water efficient fixtures in restrooms, kitchens and showering areas.
Business facilities often have domestic water uses such as toilet flushing, sinks for hand washing, and showering facilities. These represent great opportunities for water savings if they function efficiently and are properly maintained.
Improve cooling tower/ air-conditioner efficiency.
Significant water savings can be achieved by reducing the amount of water used for cooling towers/ air conditioners. Cooling towers often represent the largest percentage of water usage in business operations. Adopting easy solutions like switching off air conditioners at night and only switching them on between 9am and 3pm help reduce water usage.
“As responsible businesses we should aim for long-term water efficiencies and adopt water saving schemes that not only make good business sense but also safeguard the future of this imperative natural resource,” concludes Orie.