LET’S USE LESS WATER
1st March 2016
What is happening now?
It Is well researched that the current levels of water consumption are unsustainable. Water scarcity is a global issue and it is estimated that…
1.8 billion people will be living in water scarce areas by 2025.
As the population increases; demand for water consumption grows. Costs against water have increased significantly in recent years and are forecast to continue to climb.Can we use water more effectively?
The Infographic Show on YouTube presents an insightful video to some shocking fact about water and the current global situation. Follow the link below.
Water at events?
Water needs to be managed at various stages of an event; from fresh drinking water supply to handling sewage.
The 4 different categories of water used are:
Including water conservation and waste water management into your event will be an integral part of its sustainability, now and in the future. Water conservation is the prevention, control and development of water resources. Waste water management is the process to remove physical, chemical and biological contaminants from water.
Toilets at festivals
A highly important element for festivals are toilet facilities. This is an essential part of an event but can effect an events overall sustainability by the water usage, chemical usage, transport of kit, and treatment of sewage. Festivals have a number of options; the most popular being portable toilets and compost toilets. When considering the toilets best fitted to your event it is essential that the toilets are low volume flushing or waterless.
Portable toilets are what you tend to find at an outdoor event; although they might not be to appealing they are the cheapest option for event organisers. There are a lot of downfall to portable toilets including the transport cost to get the toilets themselves to the event but also elements to deal with the sewage after the event is over.
Compost toilets are becoming more popular at festivals and outdoor events. These are environmentally friendly alternative to portable toilets as there is no water or chemical usage. A positive to compost toilets are that the transportable waste is reduced by 80-90%. The cost for compost toilets is larger than portable toilets but what is best for the environment?
Bottled Water at festivals
Bottled water is a big practicality for festival attendees but do you know the implications it can have on the environment? Although it can be easy to buy a bottle of water and dispose of it quickly the implications it has on the environment are a lot higher then using a tap. The cost to make bottled water is several hundreds time larger then tap water. Not forgetting the level of plastic pollution it can create.
The ‘Bring a Bottle’ campaign was created by Kambe and aims to reduce the environmental impacts by eliminating disposable plastics. They plan to increase water supplies and have access to fresh water more accessible.
How can you spend a penny at festivals now?
Glastonbury is a large festival and requires a lot of toilet facilities to accompany the large attendee rates. In 2015 the event had over 4000 toilet facilities which included 2000 long drop, 1,300 compost toilets as well as portable toilets and a small number of flushing
toilets for those who missed the comfort of an indoor toilet. The festival also had 700 meters’ worth of men’s urinals and 4 shepee sites for the ladies willing to try something different.
Bestival had a choice between portable toilets and compost toilets which were spread out around the event grounds.
Shambala in 2014 had 220 portable toilets and 52 compost toilets. The event is always looking for ways to improve and become a greener festival; the aim for 2016 is to only use compost toilets.
What are water bottle policies at events?
V festival promote bring your own bottle to refill whilst at the event. Although the bottle must be plastic and no more than 1 litre. You can purchase water from any of the catering units available.
Bestival supply water bottles but they are specifically made out of bio degradable material. These are supplied by Life Water and profits made go to charities helping water projects in developing countries.
Shambala has introduced the ‘Bring a Bottle’ campaign in 2015 10,000 single use water bottles were not used as the festival banned on-site sales. The festival sold 821 stainless steel bottles that raised money for a water based charity. The festival also used reusable cups and managed to save 1 tonne of plastic when compared to using disposable. 120, 242 bar cups prevented from being used once and discarded.
How can this be improved?
Through research it is clear that water plays a big part to the sustainability of a festival. It is important to understand that elements of water can affect other factors; such as increasing carbon emissions and plastic pollution. But can this be reduced?
The answer to this is yes, by using 100% water-free toilets and 100% chemical free toilets will reduce water usage and transport emissions. Shambala is a festival that strive to achieve its green goals and for 2016 they aim to use 100% compost toilets. Compost toilets allows you to compost your sewage; this lowers transport and lowers the overall carbon emissions. Some say that you can even use the resulting compost to fertilize the land your event is held at.
The use of bottled water at events can be decreased by introducing some rules and regulations. As a result, the banning of on-site sales of bottled water decreased the plastic pollution at Shambala festival by a large amount. The initiative of selling reusable bottles not only allows the attendee to have access to water but allows the festival to raise money for charities enhancing water efficiency around the globe.
Let’s work together to save water and make events greener!
Do you have any idea as to how events can save water?
What are your thoughts and opinions on the matter?
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