Water Conservation

Washington State University (WSU) Facilities Services, Housing and Dining and Environmental Health and Safety are responsible for identifying ways to conserve water usage on campus

Water Conservation at WSU

WSU irrigation system uses water for the same four wells used by the drinking water system.  Since it is from the same source, we are constantly looking for ways to conserve water through projects such as xeriscaping, evaluating feasibility of technological advances such as moisture sensitive irrigation system, and using leak detection to repair existing infrastructure.  In fact, over the last two decades WSU has decreased its water consumption by 31 percent, from 681 million gallons in 1986 to 478 million gallons in 2006.  During that same time, our enrollment increased by nearly 2,500 students and our square footage of campus facilities increased by 26 percent.

Why is this important?

Drinking water is in short supply globally, even in the United States.  This shortage has also led to concern in water quality because of the need to reuse water and use less than ideal sources.  This has brought water conservation to the forefront of many community’s planning discussions.  While technological advances can assist in reclaiming water and increasing efficiency, there is still a need to change society’s habits.

How can you reduce water use?

In most communities the drinking water system is the same water use for showers and irrigating landscaping.  More and more often water is in short supply so it is important to reduce the amount of water each individual uses.  Here are some easy ways to minimize the amount of water you use on a daily basis.

  • Shorten the length of your shower.
  • Plant native grasses and plants that require minimal irrigation.
  • Carry around a reusable water bottle to fill at any water fountain or other safe drinking water source.
  • Install water efficient faucets and shower heads.

For more information go to Environmental Protection Agency or National Resource Defense Council websites.