Clean drinking water: conserving and recuperating it
DISHWASHING: WHAT CHOICE IS BEST?
Although the water consumption of dishwashers is a well-kept secret by manufacturers, it is possible to find out which models are the most energy efficient. The best choice offers a consumption of 12 liters (3 gallons) per cycle. To find out more, consult the Office of Energy Efficiency website.
The dishwasher, is, above all else, a time-saver and uses less detergent than washing dishes by hand. If you opt for this choice, choose an ENERGY STAR® model. The cost is generally equivalent to that of the non-certified appliances, for a reduced consumption of water and energy.
Nevertheless, even though the dishwasher is not a bad choice, washing by hand without washing the dishes under running water, is an even greener alternative.
Energy-efficient dishwashers use between 15 and 22 liters (4 to 6 gallons) of water per cycle and require 2 to 3 cycles. If you wash the dishes under running water, you will waste up to 103 liters (27 gallons) for the same quantity of dishes. In this case, the dishwasher wins hands down in terms of efficiency. By contrast, if you fill a sink full of water, the quantity of water used will not exceed 20 liters (5 gallons) and you will save the energy necessary for the operation of the dishwasher: this is by far the most environmentally friendly option!
WASHING THE LAUNDRY: SAVINGS TO BE MADE
The ENERGY STAR® washing machine costs approximately $200 more to purchase. However, it allows for 35% to 50% of energy and water savings per year, which would justify the initial expenditure. Don't forget to do the laundry in cold water and do a large load rather than several small loads.