Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Day 79 of our Green Year: Green The Toilet

One of the biggest water wasters in the house is the toilet. This is something we all use, multiple times a day, which we have become so accustom to that any place that does not have a flushing toilet is considered to be 'a backwater shack'.

However, how can you go green with your toilet? Well, there is the obvious tip of 'when it is yellow, let it mellow, when it is brown flush it down', but what else can you do to conserve water? You really need to think of ways to conserve water with the toilet because it uses 20 liters of water every time it is flushed. So, for one person, who uses the bathroom five times a day, and flushes every time, they flush 100 liters of water down the toilet, literally. For a family of four, that can be over 500 liters depending on how often it is used!

So, what are some other solutions? Here is something that we will be doing during Our Green Year in our house.

First, we are putting a brick, or at least a plastic bottle full of water in the back of the tank. This will actually cut down on the flush of water by a quarter, or even one third. When you do this, just make sure you don't impede the flushing mechanism.

We rent, so we cannot get a low-flush toilet, but it will be on our list when we do buy a house.

What else can you do? Have any suggestions, let us know!

One thing I would like to talk about now, is the Alberta government's decision to cut greenhouse gas emissions by half by 2050. There are several problems with this, and most of it is fluff with no substance from a government that is trying to make it look like they care about the environment. First, they are using carbon capture technology that has not been completely researched for long-term effects, and they are putting $2 billion into it. Second, I do not understand why governments like Alberta's insist on setting goals that are four decades away. Nearly every climate change scientist has stated that immediate action is needed (AS IN RIGHT NOW) to ward off climate change. There is no time to waste, yet the G8 countries and Alberta feel that lowering emissions by 1.19 percent a year until 2050 is a good plan. What is needed is a 50 percent reduction now, not later. We are nearing the tipping point, and the time to 'wait and see' or slowly lower emissions is long gone. This is just another reason why Layla and I are boycotting all things Albertan.