Water Consumption

by SamanthaRocher on November 9, 2017 - 7:45am

 

 

 

Water is a necessity. Yet it is more accessible to some than others, while water is widely available in Canada, for example, it is considered a scarce resource in South Africa. The overabundance of water in Canada has caused Canadians to spend, on a day-to-day base, more than 251 L per person in 2011, making us one of the bigger users of fresh water per capita in the world (Statistics Canada 2017). Furthermore, while the average Canadian used about 274 L per day per person in 2009 (Statistics Canada 2017), the average Quebecer on the other hand was significantly above the average by consuming 386 L per capita per day (Environment Canada 2011). This over use of fresh water not only can impact on the ecosystem, it also impacts our ability to sustain future generations with fresh water as well having a financial strain on our society. First of all, fresh water supplies are expected to decline as climate change will influence rainfall patterns and cause temperatures to rises, resulting in faster evaporation of water world-wide (Natural Resource Canada 2017). Secondly, water usage caused municipalities across Canada to spend more than $3.9 billion just to collect water from sewages and dispose of it (Statistics Canada 2015), on top of which needs to be added the costs of water treatment and system maintenance as the more water is used, the more water has to be treated and the more it damages the current installations.

 

To help address the issue by over water consumption by households, we propose taxing households with a swimming pool. Since water is a necessity and it is difficult to find a just way of making people pay for it, we have decided that taxing those who had the money to buy a pool was a better idea.

 

During the summer, pools not only have to be filled up, they also need to be topped up as to keep the level of water relatively constant. That drop in water level is partially caused by water splashes, but mainly caused by evaporation. Under hot and sunny conditions, up to 300 L a day can evaporate for a pool (though the bigger the pool, the more water evaporates). This sums up to using about a bit less than 15,300 L per month to top up the pool under hot and sunny conditions (Department of Land Resource Management Northern Territory Government), not including the water used to fill up the pool. As such, by taxing pool-owners, the non-pool-owner will not have to pay for extra costs posed by the pool-owner. Furthermore, it will encourage people to use the exisiting resources instead of all buying their own pool, as many municipalities have either indoor pools, outdoor pools or both. If pool-owners spend almost 15,300 L per month just topping up their pools, the less people buy pools, less water will be consumed.

 

Sources

Environment Canada. (2017, April 10). Residential water use. Retrieved November 07, 2017, from https://www.canada.ca/en/environment-climate-change/services/environmental-indicators/residential-water-use.html

Environment Canada. (2011). 2011 Municipal Water Use Report. Retrieved November 06, 2017, from https://www.ec.gc.ca/Publications/B77CE4D0-80D4-4FEB-AFFA-0201BE6FB37B/2011-Municipal-Water-Use-Report-2009-Stats_Eng.pdf

Department of Land Resource Management Northern Territory Government. (n.d.). Swimming Pools and Water Use. Retrieved November 07, 2017, from https://denr.nt.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/269330/WaterResNT_Factsheet_Swimming-Pools-CA.pdf

Statistics Canada. (2015, November 27). Section 4: Wastewater discharges. Retrieved November 07, 2017, from http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/16-201-x/2012000/part-partie4-eng.htm

Natural Resources Canada. (2017, October 30). Water. Retrieved November 08, 2017, from http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/earth-sciences/geography/atlas-canada/selected-thematic-maps/16888

Comments

Helle Samantha,

Your project is really interesting. You made me realize how much water a pool wastes and this is really astonishing. On the other hand, I think you’ll have a lot of trouble changing the laws about pools because poeple are not very aware of their huge consequences. Furtermore, I would suggest to inform poeple about the problem and make poeple sign a petition. This would really increase the chances of your project working. I hope you’ll take note of my suggestions.

Hi samantha, i think your project idea is great. it really makes you think twice on purchasing a pool. My one question is: how would you be able to convince the city/government to enforce thes rules and how would they be able to enforce them? considering that people in quebec already pay high taxes how would this work in favor to better the city its self. I understand that it betters the enviroment but would the taxes go towards supplying water for kids in africa or would it be used to build roads and improve establishments sacross the city, because the labor used to build these infrasturcture will also release gases into the air that will affect the climate.

About the author