Most of us take for granted an abundant supply of good, fresh water. We meet our daily needs when we turn on the faucet and get seemingly unlimited running water. However, this situation could change as the demand for water grows, especially in the spring and summer months.
Water shortages are certainly inconvenient and even scary. At first, they are hard to understand when we know that the United States' daily rainfall equals 4.2 trillion gallons. However, water is not always located where it is needed and demand keeps increasing.
In the last 30 years, the United States' demand for water has grown faster than our ability to find new water sources. During this period our population has grown 52 percent, but total water usage has tripled.
Just how much water do we use each day? Studies show wide variations in different parts of the country, and between urban and rural households. On average, statistics show that in our part of the country a typical consumer uses 50 to 75 gallons daily inside the house. We use the most for toilets, followed by bathing, laundry/dishes, and cooking/drinking, according to the American Water Works Association.
Water use varies with the time of day and season of the year. Households use less water in the early morning while most people are sleeping and during the winter. Peak consumption is in the spring and summer, and when the family gets home in the late afternoon.