Conserve Water and Get Penalized?

Lake levelAlong with the rest of the state, I’ve talked and worried about the drought we have been in having all year last year. We were in a bad drought situation last year so the city governments urged all its users to conserve water. While the conservation methods were at first met with resistance, people soon fell in line when confronted with visual proof of the drought, our beloved lakes turning into dry beds. Many of us implemented water conservation methods throughout our homes and businesses and I think we helped ease the burden some.

Thankfully, this year, the rains came back and our lakes are back up to capacity again. The great thing is, even though the lakes are full again, people have gotten into the habit of conserving and were continuing to save water even when it’s not necessary anymore. That’s wonderful, isn’t it?

Well, you’d think so, but as this article from our local paper says, “all this good news does have a potential downside”. The down side is, that people have been conserving so much that the city is now not making enough revenue from selling water. So they are proposing a tiered rate program where anyone who is using a higher volume of water will pay more than someone who is using less. The problem comes with large families like ours though. Although we may be using less water than we did this same time last year, we still use more water than our neighbors who live by themselves and may not even be consciously conserving their water usage. Does that mean that our rate will be higher than theirs? I don’t really know how it will impact us, to be honest with you. Our water bill has not gone down despite the water conservation methods we’ve implemented.

I received this via email today and all the tips they mention, we are already doing without seeing much change in our water bill. But, the way I look at it, whether it makes a difference in the amount of my water bill or not, it is just good common sense practice to do all the conservation methods anyway. We have gotten to be such a wasteful society that we take for granted the conveniences we get. There are still places on this world where running water is a luxury; a luxury that we shouldn’t take for granted lest we lose it.

Save Money with Durham’s 111 Water-Saving Tips

The less water you use, the lower your rate, the more money you save.

With today’s economic conditions, every penny saved counts. Since July, the City of Durham has been implementing its new tiered water rate structure to encourage efficient water use. The new system includes five tiers for single family residential customers.

Tiered Water Use Rates Click to view larger image

To get the lowest rate, just follow as many of the 111 water-saving tips that you can. You’ll help protect your hard-earned money, Durham’s water resources, the environment, and our way of life.

Here are some simple actions you can do:

  1. Turn off the water while brushing your teeth and save 4 gallons a minute.
  2. Time your shower to keep it under 5 minutes. You’ll save 1,000 gallons each month.
  3. Install a low-flow showerhead. They’re inexpensive, easy to install, and can save you more than 500 gallons a week.
  4. Grab a wrench and fix all leaky faucets. When washing your hands, turn off the water while you lather.
  5. Run your washing machine and dishwasher only when they are full and save over 1,000 gallons each month.
  6. When planting this Fall, choose low-water use plants for year-round landscape color and save up to 550 gallons each year.

For the complete list of 111 money-saving tips, including a new
online bill calculator,
visit today!

For Spanish, click here

City of Durham

October is National Toilet Repair Month

Receive up to $100 credit rebate
on your water bill for qualified High Efficiency Toilet
purchases/installations after January 1, 2008.
Click here to find out more.

Water Use It Wisely
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