The severe drought in California and in the Southwest is obvious, but the changes people are making every single day are less obvious. Dig around, however, and you start to see the conservation movement is gaining traction faster than we think.
For those of you in California experiencing the drought, do you think conservation efforts are “in your face” enough? After all, San Francisco Water (sfwater.org/drought) reminds us here in the Bay Area that a 10% overall reduction in water use is in effect now, but the “25% reduction in outdoor irrigation water” does not even go into effect until July 1st.
If history repeats itself, we can look to the 1970s drought in California for “inspiration.” Talk to any Californian about that drought, and they’ll tell you about “army showers” they took or about letting the toilet “yellow if it’s mellow” to save water.
Here at MeterHero, our community is doing their part already by tracking their water usage. By linking their water utility meter to our dashboard, participants get paid rebates when they save water now.
“People want to do their part,” explains one of our best participants, Tina Cornely.
Cornely tracks her water usage with MeterHero and sees the benefit of her conservation efforts. Cornely is also helping out by spreading the word to her friends and followers over conversations, her blog, and social media such as Twitter (follow her at @TinaCornely). With MeterHero, people like Cornely can link their water utility meter (and electric and gas meters, too) to track water usage and conservation efforts.
Water conservation is deeply aligned with Cornely’s beliefs and actions. She founded a nonprofit called Bridging Humanity, which is a volunteer-based 501(c)(3) that teaches people around the world how to become self-sufficient. She points out that people can do so much with so little, too. Abroad, she is teaching rural communities grey water techniques. Here at home, she is installing a solar-powered refrigerator, for example, as opposed to installing a more expensive solar roofing system and recommending others also make smaller, achievable changes to conserve more and prepare for emergencies. She invested in Solar-Traps for her kitchen and has a grey-water system in her kitchen, bathroom, and garden. She uses tools like MeterHero to track her usage, which has also helped her know when she had a water leak in her home (indicated by spiked water usage), so that she could repair an otherwise “invisible” leak.
For others, the drought provides a sense of urgency to save water. For better or for worse, people are starting to feel the drought drag on and on, and are making real changes — “Brown is the new Green” signs are popping up, billboards advertise conservation, transportation stops and busses have signage, people are replacing water-hogging lawns, and sites like CADrought.com, SF Water, and East Bay Municipal Utility District are sharing news and suggestions how to save water.
Stories of folks like Tina Cornely and so many others remind us that people are making changes, saving water, and making a difference. We need more people like Tina on board. If you are a fan of MeterHero, please let us know what you love about the product (and what you’d like to see us improve) and tell your friends, family, and neighbors.
Ways to save water and make a difference with MeterHero
As water becomes more scarce, more amazing people sign up an account at MeterHero. Thanks to all our new participants — we are so happy to have you on board.
Thanks to our sponsors, participants are now able to take advantage of rebates and special offers. If you are thinking about solar or artificial turf, please contact us to learn more.
After all, there’s always more we can do to save water, so why not get started today?