Save water for businesses and save money too
Water, water everywhere and not a free drop to drink.
(With the current hot and dry weather (Summer 2018) we thought it timely to re-post this article)
I have been thinking a lot about water, most days (here in Scotland anyway) it seems to fall from the sky freely, but few of us have the luxury of our own water source.
What started this train of thought was a well-known bottled water brand being retailed at 94p for 500ml. That is £1,880 per Cubic Metre. If that was the price that most businesses paid then they would be pretty quick to install water-saving equipment. OK, that price is extreme. Sainsbury’s sell two litres of water for 25p which is still £125 per m3.
I use these examples as I am pretty sure that very few people who read this actually know what their business pays for water. Even fewer will realise that for every litre of water you use you are charged more by the water authority to dispose of that water.
So what are the charges in Scotland?
Well, it all depends on what size of water pipe that brings water into your building and how much you use. Even in this modern-day, not every business has a water meter, which can be problematic, but I will come back to water meters later.
Scottish Water costs 85p per m3. However, the water companies charge £1.43 to dispose of that same m3. So the true cost is £2.28 per m3. Not too bad when compared to Strathmore Spring or Sainsbury’s (other brands are available)
‘Ah but I don’t pour bottled water down the toilet’ I hear you say, well technically you do but only once your body has processed it.
Most businesses have little idea of what they spend on water. What I would like to cover over the next few articles are the various ways to save water in the workplace. Looking at both the pros and cons of various systems. There is no one fix for all. I am going to concentrate mostly on the washroom area as in most businesses that is where the largest waste occurs, but for those of you wishing to explore this further, there is some great info at Resource Efficient Scotland (http://www.resourceefficientscotland.com) including how to complete a water audit.
There are several guilty parties in the water wastage league, but in reality, anything that uses water, dispenses water or carries water has the potential to cause wastage and should be checked regularly.