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15 doable steps.

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Not everyone is aware of the growing pressures on the nation's water supply, but everyone who pays for water could follow steps--many suggested by the New York City Department of Environmental Protection--to reduce consumption and your water bill.

In your bathroom

* Take short showers and save 5-7 gallons a minute.

* Fill the tub halfway and save 10-15 gallons.

* Install water-saving toilets, showerheads and faucet aerators, if possible.

* Fill a large plastic bottle with water and place it in your toilet tank if you can't switch to a low-flow toilet.

* Turn off water while shaving, washing hands or brushing teeth. Faucets use 2-3 gallons a minute.

* Only flush the toilet when necessary.

In your kitchen or laundry

* Run the dishwasher and washing machine only when full. Save by using the short cycle.

* Install faucet aerators, if possible.

* Turn off water while washing dishes. Faucets use 2-3 gallons a minute. Filling a basin takes only 10 gallons to wash and rinse.

* Instead of running water to make it cold, keep a chilled supply in the refrigerator, ready to drink.

* Reuse water used to wash vegetables for watering indoor plants or garden.

When outdoors

* Use a self-closing nozzle on your hose.

* Sweep your sidewalk or driveway clean instead of using water.

* Buy a rain barrel and collect rainwater for watering grass, plants and vegetables and for reducing storm runoff.

* Plant a garden, window box or share in a community garden where possible.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:ECOLOGY
Publication:National Catholic Reporter
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 18, 2008
Words:241
Previous Article:Water tapping a strained supply.
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