Go low-flow. Whether restroom or break room faucets or showers, make sure they are outfitted with low-flow restrictors. A low-flow faucet aerator, for instance, emits less than 1.5 gallons of water per minute compared with 2.2 gallons for standard faucets. Older toilets use nearly 5 gallons of water per flush, while newer high-efficiency ones use 2. And pre-rinse spray valves – the hoses that restaurants use to rinse dirty dishes – out put 1.5 gallons per minute compared with 4 gallons per minute or more for standard valves.
Purchase water-efficient equipment. Various types of equipment used by businesses consume a lot of water but are available in water-efficient models, or have less-water-intensive alternatives. They may have somewhat higher upfront costs but can pay for themselves quickly through water and water-heating energy savings.
Reduce landscape water use. Lush green lawn can require dozens or hundreds of gallons of water a day to keep it looking so. Consider planting native landscapes or other less water-intensive alternatives. Also consider installing a rain-harvesting system to collect water on site for landscape irrigation or using a sensored irrigation system to better control exterior water use.
Engage and inform employees. Every employee plays a role in water usage, so this is a prime opportunity to get employees involved in the business’s green efforts. Whether it’s part of a green team effort or publishing articles in the newsletter, remind employees to be conscientious of water use and ask for their ideas on how to save it.