In Salt Lake City, we are extremely fortunate to have access to such good, clean water sources. With shortage and population demands facing all of us, we must make a greater effort to conserve. The good news is that many water-saving strategies take little expense or effort.
Recently Mayor Biskupski declared a Stage 1 Advisory for water conservation, in keeping with Salt Lake City’s 5-stage Water Shortage Contingency Plan. The plan outlines five water shortage stages triggered by water supply levels, stream flows, and water demand. Stage 1 is voluntary and a public education measure. The City is asking businesses and residents to take a few simple actions to help with water conservation.
Drought conditions or not, there are good reasons for making a commitment to water conservation. Water comprises a significant utility cost for most business (even more if you consider combined water and sewer), and is the second greatest opportunity for savings behind energy. Save money now by actively managing water use and costs, because doing nothing now will cost more later on.
Where to start? The Salt Lake Chamber launched a “Water Champions” program for businesses, including best practices and help to get your business in shape.
- Become “water aware” as a business. Start with a free water check here: http://www.cwel.usu.edu/watercheck
- Set clear conservation goals and build them into corporate culture.
- Share your successes.
Ensuring that Utah’s businesses make an impact in addressing our water challenges requires a circular approach. This means that in all their processes, businesses find ways to keep resources moving throughout the supply chain, such as water reuse. Adopting and scaling these circular water management practices will help support the necessary repair, investment and public-private partnerships needed for achieving infrastructure resilience and ensuring Utah’s businesses and communities can thrive over the long term.
The Salt Lake Chamber has been actively pursuing the circular approach sharing local business success stories. By constantly learning about and discussing best management practices in water stewardship, infrastructure and new innovation and technology will help our state’s businesses continue to lead the way in creatively addressing Utah’s water challenges.
Salt Lake water managers are also working to maintain a sophisticated pipe system and stay ahead of leaks. As well, they are planning with city golf course staff and Utah State University to develop water conservation plans by testing improved turf types that reduce water demand.
Get involved today – set new goals for your business and continually re-evaluate for improvements. Get help from these resources and help us all sustain the population, economy and quality of life.