The life sustaining fluid – water-has come to occupy centrestage in the present times.Conserving water should receive the highest priority by individuals,governments and the society at large.Increased deforestation and urbanisation have taken a heavy toll on our water resources.The rapid depletion of water table has meant an increased focus on adopting ways and means of preventing loss of water.Some of the small but important steps that we can take are detailed below:
- A lot of water gets wasted during brushing and shaving.Turn off tap when not actually required.
- Do not use dishwasher unless very much required.
- Practice conserving the use of water while washing vessels as also while swapping floors.Instruct, teach and supervise domestic helps to do the same.Turn off taps when not in active use.
- Teach children the importance of conserving water in day to day activities.
- Change the bathroom fittings such as shower heads,faucets and taps which are not water efficient.Fix leaks.
- Practice rain water harvesting wherever possible.
- Ensure that overhead tanks and sumps do not overflow .Install water level controllers to automatically stop at the desired level.
- Avoid washing cars at home with hose.Use recycled water if possible.better still go to a car wash.
- While serving water in glasses for drinking do not pour full .Use only as much as required.
- In washrooms flush with less,wherever possible.
- If using half load of clothes in washing machine,do not use the full load option.
At a macro level ,there is a paramount need to revive the dying lakes and rejuvenate the acquifers.We also need to urgently undertake efficient rain water harvesting and conservation methods.It would not be improper to state that water conservation should become an integral part of our lifestyle.
Water and sanitation have been declared as a fundamental right according to a UN General Assembly declaration of 2010,It has acknowledged that clean drinking water and sanitation are essential to the realisation of human rights.In the Indian Constitution the right to water is not declared as a fundamental right.The right to life as per Article 21 however, is interpreted by the courts in several cases as encompassing the right to safe and potable drinking water and sanitation.
It would be pertinent to recall the words of Mr Kofi Annan the ex- UN Secretary general that “Access to safe water is a fundamental human need and therefore a basic human right.”It is to be hoped that all countries would take appropriate steps to make this dream a possibility.