Individual Efforts Matter. Every Drop Matters.

Posted on Uncategorized July 29, 2021 by Vittorio Bonomi

Individual Efforts Matter. Every Drop Matters.

The impact of individual consumption and leaks on overall water demand in Florida.

Water Security System

All this rain comes with a purpose. Over 75% of the water we use here in Florida and nearly 90% of the water we drink comes from our aquifers, or ‘underground mountains’ that work as water reservoirs which are replenished by rain. We have two of them, the Biscayne Aquifer – a shallow coastal basin of approximately 4,000 square miles located below Miami, and the Floridan Aquifer which is deeper down and spans the whole state. As the latter is usually too salty to consume without further treatment, the Biscayne is really our main source. Because of its proximity to the surface, the Biscayne gives us cheap access to freshwater, but also requires close management to balance excess and lack of rainfall throughout the year.

In particular, the management of Miami’s water resources has become more crucial over the years as the city grew and more concrete was built, leading to an increase in water demand and a decrease in the capacity of the ground to absorb the rainfall and replenish the aquifer. The consequences of impermeabilization of the Biscayne water table are the greater risks we now face of saltwater intrusion and contamination, which can make the water unfit for human consumption.

This is a big issue not only because without the Biscayne we wouldn’t have anywhere else to take all freshwater we need, but also because water is a champion of most things we do in Florida. From dressing up our beautiful Biscayne Bay and Everglades landscapes, to watering our crops and lawns, to generating electricity to servicing our business and human needs.

Across the whole state, the south which is home to 41% of the total population accounts for nearly half of all freshwater and saline water withdrawals. Most of it is used for public supply which is, in other words, the water each of us pay in our utility bills put altogether.

South Florida Water Consumption – Percentage share per sector

Source: SFWMD 2019 Estimated Water Use Report

It also interesting to know that the total freshwater withdrawals in South Florida have been moving in the opposite direction to population growth since 2000, thanks to South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) programs encouraging the use of alternative water sources, such as reclaimed wastewater. This has helped to lower demand for potable water by as many as 37 gallons per day across the whole region. Other measures include water conservation and promotion of passive measures, such as the use of water efficient appliances and water efficient devices. These can be simple actions that together make a considerable difference in offsetting total water demand.

The success of these initiatives shows with the reduction of the amount of water used by South Florida’s 9 million residents from nearly 180 gallons of water per person per day in 2000, to about 128 gallons in 2020.

While this is a lot of savings, the benefits they bring to Florida’s water wellbeing are greatly reduced by some persisting inefficiencies. These have much to do with losses due to leaks. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average household loses 9,400 gallons of water annually from leaks. For Miami-Dade’s over 833 thousand households, these losses equal nearly 8 billion gallons or 12 thousand Olympic Pools annually.

Leaking water is indeed a real issue that we face. It impacts our environment, our bills and our safety as well, as we have recently seen with the collapse of the condo in Miami due to its structure being corroded by water leaks for years.

Water leak protection systems can help with this aspect of water conservation and security by automatically detecting and stopping leaks. They do this by sending alarms and notifications (passive systems) or by shutting off the supply immediately (active systems). Water Security System has been joining efforts with Miami’s water users for over a decade to help reducing the number of those Olympic Pools we empty every day due to leaks. By using the latest technological advances in the field, it has been working with commercial, industrial and residential users, as well as public utilities to prevent catastrophic flooding, water damage, while also removing the risk of exorbitant bills due to leakage.

Water conservation can help us protect Florida’s water resources and people wellbeing. And here is where individual efforts together can make the biggest impact. In addition to voluntarily closing our taps and using water more intelligently (by running fully loaded dishwashers for instance), preventing leaks is a crucial part of water conservation that we can and must address.

Our Water Security Systems have multiple applications to help you prevent and manage leaks. While more than one system’s solution can fit your property, certain systems can provide you with distinctive functions to best service your needs. Contact us today to find out about how our technology can support your water conservation objectives.

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