Letter: If it’s yellow, let it mellow — and other drought-conscious decisions

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Rockport Reservoir drops to 39% of capacity during extreme drought conditions on Monday, July 12, 2021.

I heard our governor’s suggestion that we pray for rain and take shorter showers to help with our state’s drought. How about lifestyle changes?

Our yard is xeriscaped and we practice ‘skip the rinse’ (for dishes and recyclables). I catch water in a bucket as the shower water warms and use it to water my houseplants or dump outside on my drought tolerant flowers. We have a rainwater catchment.

Other no-brainers: water your lawn before 10 AM or after 6 PM, use your washer and dishwasher only when full, place a filled plastic water bottle in older, high flow toilets and don’t use your toilet for disposal; toss it in the garbage can.

Best of all, we live the jingle, “if it’s yellow, let it mellow; if it’s brown, flush it down.”

Toilets are the leading water user in Utah homes. Older toilets use between 5-7 gallons per flush; newer toilets, 1.6 gallons. Since the average person flushes five times a day, even a low-flow toilet can add up to over 1,200 gallons a month for a family of 4.

Don’t like the sight of it? Close the lid!

I see Utahwarersavers.com offers rebates of up to $100 when replacing toilets that use more than 1.6 gallons per flush that were installed in homes built before 1994. Check it out.

Nia Z. Sherar, Salt Lake City

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