Why is water conservation important? Because water is not as abundant a resource as we think it is and because water conservation also translates into energy conservation. Hotels can use $200,000 or more in water and trade waste charges a year. These charges do not include electricity for heating the water or cooling tower chemicals. Water efficiency audits in the hotel industry have shown it is possible to achieve average water savings of around 20% without compromising guest comfort levels. Of all the water present on the planet, a shockingly small amount (less than 3%) is available for human consumption.
Here are some basic water conservation tips for your average hotel (of course, always check with your local authorities to see if suggested tips are allowed in your area):
WaterSense – EPA Voluntary Program
This voluntary program is offered to manufacturers, retailers, distributors, nonprofits, trade associations, utilities and landscape irrigation professionals to bring water-efficient products to market. Website also offers water-saving resources.
Waterwiser – American Water Works Association
This website is a comprehensive clearinghouse of resources on water conservation, efficiency, and demand management for conservation professionals and the larger water supply community.
American Water and Energy Savers – List of General Tips
This resource provides 21 different and effective tips on how to save water. These tips can be applied to any hotel of any size.
Water Conservation Tips: A 10-Step Approach for Your Business
This resource was developed by the Long Beach Water Department to stress the importance of using water wisely. These general tips can be used by any hotel facilities manager to implement basic water conservation practices at a hotel.
A Water Conservation Guide for Commercial, Institutional and Industrial Users
This guide was developed by the New Mexico Office of the State Engineer to help commercial, institutional, and industrial water users conserve water, our most precious natural resource. Therefore, this manual includes useful data that can be used by decision makers to develop comprehensive conservation plans, including: 1) The elements required to implement a water conservation program, 2) areas where major water savings are most likely to be realized, 3) water conservation guidelines for specific water uses, 4) case studies of businesses and institutions that have successfully enacted water conservation programs.
Hotel Water Conservation – A Seattle Demonstration
This resource provides a good case study of how and engineering approach and an behavioral/educational approach can be combined to achieve an effective water conservation program. Lots of water conservation data is included in this study.