Disclaimer : Some of the tips might gross you out but nevertheless they are important to be mentioned.
I have a confession to make. Lately, a thought has been nagging me that probably I migrated to Bangalore at a wrong time, only to increase its woes. Life has been sucked out of the garden City and its death has been predicted in 5 years. Bangalore has been facing severe water shortage and pollution owing to the burden of ever increasing population – an irresponsible one at that, including me. Yes I am generalizing and I care less if you feel offended. Because if you are in-fact a responsible citizen of Bangalore you would not be offended by my subtle hostility; rather be empathetic to it and understand where it is coming from.
Pick up any newspaper , remove your Rayban and put on the glasses of sensitivity and understand what people, animals, birds and nature go through , who are not capable of ordering a Tanker when their water supply is cut off. Recall the grim image of poor, lower middle class people standing in queue , in scorching sun, with their plastic pots . You grace them with a distant and useless pity and then move on with your work sitting in your air conditioned offices. Well, be in no illusion that you are not going to be affected by this crisis.
Let me cut to the chase. I am no policy maker, or a scientist or a disaster management officer to be able to tell you how to tackle this problem. Preaching is not what we Indians are receptive of. I am here just to share what I do in my limited capacity to not add to the burden of the city and also to know if someone out there does it better. If so enlighten me.
- I Keep the faucet outlet to as low as possible. While brushing, washing hands or doing the dishes we can save a good amount of water by a reducing the flow. Educate your domestic help about the importance of this step. Tell him/her that they will be first in the line to be affected by this.
- I don’t wash clothes every day. Infact once a week. Just like you save money when you buy a product in bulk, you save water when you wash clothes in bulk. Well this is a personal choice and difficult to compromise on, especially with the generation of our parents. But dire needs call for compromises. We can be selfish only to an extent. Beyond that there would be nothing left to be selfish about.
- I don’t spend the entire flush tank every time I tinkle. Well its self-explanatory, unless you have a bladder of a Giant.
- Every time I turn on the motor to recharge the roof tank from the sump or bore-well, I set an alarm to remind me to turn it off. Based on personal experience, we tend to forget to turn it off on time and once it overflows the damage is more than what we assume.
- Mop the floor instead of washing it. This is for the cleanliness freaks who would go out of their ways and wash their terrace and portion of street beyond their gate and set the stage for arrival of Goddess Lakshmi(targeted audience here). I think mopping the terrace/balconies would do the trick without hurling precious water into no good use. Again, educate your domestic help. This is an action item for me too.
- Another action item for me – Arrange for rain water recharging, if not harvesting. As a tiny ray of hope, a good monsoon is predicted this year. Make the best use of it. Install rain water harvesting facility in your house, if that is too expensive or complicated, rain water recharge system is pretty feasible. Hold meetings in your societies/Apartment buildings on how to go about this and do it now.
- Last but not the least, help poor animals, birds and people in need with water. Put out a bowl or bucket of water for stray animals and birds. Donate a tanker to distressed areas who are in dire need. I am not sure myself how to do this. If someone can enlighten me, please do.
A hah !! There goes my alarm to switch off the motor. Ciao.