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American Citizens - Continuing to Harm the Environment

            Everyday, Americans waste everything from time, fuel, food and money in every facet of their life. Every time they fail to car pool to work or school, throw away the last half of their cheeseburger or spend an extra five minutes in the shower they are wasting something. Every American has a daily routine they go through to get ready for the day, and this routine almost always involves water. Water is quite possibly the easiest to save yet most wasted resource in the every day life of the American citizen. Americans use water to shower, do the dishes, wash their clothes, wash their hands, dispose of waste and even water the lawn. There are many simple, easy and very cost-effective ways of saving water, most of which can be done while sticking to one area in the house: the bathroom.
             The largest household use of water can be attributed to the common household toilet. For the average American household, toilets contribute to a 28% of total water usage, and the possibility of an additional 5% of water being lost due to leaking toilets (Weinzierl 283). One of the simplest ways to lower water usage via the toilet is to simply not flush it as often, which can be done when the toilet has only been used for urine and not solid waste. More difficult but even more effective ways include making the toilet more efficient. Older homes may have toilets installed that use 7 gallons of water per flush instead of newer toilets which use 1.6 gallons of water per flush instead. This alone could save 5.4 gallons of water every time the toilet is flushed. Assuming the average American flushes the toilet 4 times a day, this can amount to nearly 22 gallons of water saved per day, or nearly 8000 gallons of water saved per year. Additionally, toilets can be checked to ensure that they are free of leaks, both internally and externally. .
             Another large usage of water for Americans is through the use of the shower, which attributes about 21% to the total water usage for the average American household (Weinzierl 283).

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