Friday, October 15, 2010

What is your water footprint? (Blog Action Day 2010)



Your individual water footprint is equal to the water required to produce the goods and services consumed by you (waterfootprint.org). It's akin to one's carbon footprint, as it measures also the impact of our existence on the planet. You can visit waterfootprint.org to find out yours.

As for me, the Water Footprint Calculator, after plugging into it bits and pieces of my avergae regular water consumption, churned out the number 2,597 cubic meters. It means that I use that amount of water annually if I continue living my life the way I do now. 2,597 cu.m of water is a little more than the amount of water inside an Olympic-sized swimming pool! And mind you, I'm a biiit water-conscious as it is already. Imagine if all the people in the world spent AT LEAST an Olympic-sized-pool's-worth of water annually, we'd probably dry up before we can say Sahara Desert.

A huge part of my water consumption comes from my rather liberal intake of meat and meat products. Apparently, it takes a huge amount of water to care for cows, their pastures, etc. Maybe if I eat a lesser amount of meat, I'd be able to lessen my water footprint and thus help others have more water In The Bigger Scheme of Things...

So how do we improve our water footprint without having to stop bathing or stop brushing our teeth?

H20Conserve.org offers a simple, almost painless To-Do list to help us manage our water resources expecially in our homes. Here are some samples of their tips to become water-wise:

IN THE BATHROOM
- If you don’t have a low-flow toilet, put a plastic bottle filled with water in your toilet tank to reduce the amount of water used per flush.
- Turn off the water while shaving, and instead fill the bottom of the sink with a few inches of water to rinse your razor.
- Spend less time in the shower. If you lose track of time in the shower, bring a radio into the bathroom and time yourself by how many songs play while you’re in there. Try to get your shower time down to one song (or less).
- If it’s yellow, let it mellow. The saying may be cliche, but it’s good advice. If you’re grossed out by the “yellow”, just put down the toilet lid.

IN THE KITCHEN
- Scrape dishes into the compost (or trash if you don`t compost) rather than rinsing. New dishwashers don’t even require pre-rinsed dishes.
- Think ahead! Don’t use water to defrost frozen foods instead, leave them in the fridge overnight to defrost.
- Boil food in as little water as possible. You just need enough to submerge your pasta and potatoes, and with less water you keep more flavor and nutrients in your veggies.
- When grocery shopping, try to buy more whole foods like vegetables, rice and potatoes. Processed foods and beverages like chips, candies, pre-made meals and sodas take a lot more water to produce than foods that come straight from the farm.

For more tips to save money, save water, and eventually save the planet, please visit H20Conserve.org.

Please don't forget also to sign the petition in support of initiatives for common efforts to provide access to safe water for those most in need.

Change.org|Start Petition

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Blog Action Day 2010: WATER

Petitions by Change.org|Start a Petition »


OCTOBER 15 IS BLOG ACTION DAY! Blog Action Day is that day of the year when blogs the world over write about a common topic to highlight a pressing concern that warrants the world's attention and immediate action

THIS BLOG ACTION DAY ON OCTOBER 15, 2010- LET ALL OUT BLOGS RESOUND WITH THE CLAMOR FOR BETTER ACCESS TO SAFE AND CONTINUOUS SUPPLY OF- W A T E R !

Maria of the Blog Action Day 2010 Team put together this list of WATER facts and figures to underscore the world's need for wiser use of our water resources:

Unsafe drinking water and lack of sanitation kills more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. Unclean drinking water can incubate some pretty scary diseases, like E. coli, salmonella, cholera and hepatitis A. Given that bouquet of bacteria, it's no surprise that water, or rather lack thereof, causes 42,000 deaths each week.

More people have access to a cell phone than to a toilet. Today, 2.5 billion people lack access to toilets. This means that sewage spills into rivers and streams, contaminating drinking water and causing disease.

Every day, women and children in Africa walk a combined total of 109 million hours to get water. They do this while carrying cisterns weighing around 40 pounds when filled in order to gather water that, in many cases, is still polluted. Aside from putting a great deal of strain on their bodies, walking such long distances keeps children out of school and women away from other endeavors that can help improve the quality of life in their communities.

It takes 6.3 gallons of water to produce just one hamburger. That 6.3 gallons covers everything from watering the wheat for the bun and providing water for the cow to cooking the patty and baking the bun. And that's just one meal! It would take over 184 billion gallons of water to make just one hamburger for every person in the United States.

The average American uses 159 gallons of water every day – more than 15 times the average person in the developing world. From showering and washing our hands to watering our lawns and washing our cars, Americans use a lot of water. To put things into perspective, the average five-minute shower will use about 10 gallons of water. Now imagine using that same amount to bathe, wash your clothes, cook your meals and quench your thirst.

MAKE YOUR BLOG THE FOUNTAIN THROUGH WHICH WILL FLOW INTELLIGENT DISCUSSIONS AND USEFUL INFORMATION ON IMPROVING ACCESS TO CLEAN, SAFE WATER BY THE POOREST AND MOST VULNERABLE!

Join Blog Action Day 2010 on October 15th!

Saturday, October 02, 2010

A life well-lived


A life well-lived
On and off buses you've inspected in Nueva Ecija
In the house we lived in in Pacita
In the apartment in Jordan Ave
To and from C-Town Supermarket near Journal Square
Aboard forklifts
Through harsh New Jersey winters and under the warm South Carolina sun

A life well-lived
Strengthened by a daily routine of Bible-reading and followed by unique exercise regimens
On golf courses and tennis courts, in front of the television
Powered by hearty meals, always with inspiring stories on the side
While grooming our dogs
Despite and/or because of your hearing aid
Dressed impeccably, always dapper, never sloppy

A life well-lived
Forgetting sometimes our names and voices and faces
Forgetting readily the heartaches and pains we have caused him
Forgetting never to ask me when will I get married

A life well-lived
Spent beside Rufina for more than 65 years
Who, with her, is the source of the life of my mom
Not just measured in years, but as the song goes, measured in love

A life well-lived
That is Lolo's
Begins its eternal episode in heaven where we will hopefully meet again when our own hopefully well-lived lives end.

Thank you and good night, Lolo =]