Claim: Peeing in the Shower will Help Save the Climate

Too much sustainability in the Shower Cubicle.

Too much sustainability in the Shower Cubicle. By Hardyplants (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Techly, an online publication aimed at Millennials, has advised its audience to save the world by peeing while taking a shower.

Worried about climate change? Do something about it and start peeing in the shower

According to science, you could actively help to save the planet by peeing in the shower. And we have Colbert to back us up.

It’s all about reducing the times you flush. The average flush of a modern toilet takes about six litres of water, and the average adult pees about seven times every day. I suspect that number rises during Oktoberfest, but you get the general idea.

The point is, you’re using 42 litres of water every single day just to flush your pee. Multiply that by however many adults on the planet use a toilet every day and you get a very worrying scenario.

Read more: https://www.techly.com.au/2017/12/06/worried-climate-change-something-start-peeing-shower/

The Techly article includes a Brazilian Government video which provides the same advice;

I can’t fault their logic. If you think wasting water is damaging the planet, not flushing up to 15,000 litres every year is a substantial saving.

Skeptics might be concerned that any water saving would be mitigated by confused parents furiously cleansing suddenly very smelly shower cubicles, but it seems unlikely most Millennials would take this possibility into consideration.

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Toneb

Just live by the rule ….

If it’s brown flush it down.
If it’s yellow let it mellow.

Sorted.

coaldust

Yellow let it mellow…

My wife followed this advice until the toilet developed lazy flush due to, yes, some very dull yellow precipitate blocking up important tubing of the throne.

After I used muriatic acid to solve the problem she started to flush again. (Acid=*scary* when you know nothing about chemistry)

But we do live in a desert. So I’m for conserving water. Just not that *quite stinky* way.

toorightmate

Is muriatic acid stronger than that horrible acidic sea water which is rapidly destroying Australia’s Great Barrier Reef?

Much stronger. It’s a concentration of hydrochloric acid. One can say it’s part of the acidic seas.

From Wikipedia:

Hydrochloric acid is produced in solutions up to 38% HCl (concentrated grade). Higher concentrations up to just over 40% are chemically possible, but the evaporation rate is then so high that storage and handling require extra precautions, such as pressurization and cooling. Bulk industrial-grade is therefore 30% to 35%, optimized to balance transport efficiency and product loss through evaporation. In the United States, solutions of between 20% and 32% are sold as muriatic acid. Solutions for household purposes in the US, mostly cleaning, are typically 10% to 12%, with strong recommendations to dilute before use. In the United Kingdom, where it is sold as “Spirits of Salt” for domestic cleaning, the potency is the same as the US industrial grade.[13]

coaldust

@toorightmate

Muriatic acid is another name for hydrochloric acid (HCl). It is a strong acid (it completely dissociates in water). So yes much stronger acid than seawater.

Reading further of issues with low flush volume commodes. Mine is ~30 y.o. Ifö European with jet eductors that have never failed, and I am a BIG guy.

HCl disassociates completely to H and Cl components of water H2O and salt NaCl. It’s what is used by the gallon to adjust spa pH down.

Steve Fraser

Coke works, too….

mrmethane

Seawater is not acidic AT ALL! It’s alkaline. Idiots.

Greg

The average pH at the ocean surface is about 8.1 (slightly basic; 7.0 is neutral).

It is not acidic.

higley7

to toorightmate

What acidic seawater destroying the GBR? It’s not happening, period. Coral reefs in fact acidify seawater all by themselves, as they release organic waste into the water. They are much more robust than the alarmists want us to think.

The recent bleaching in the GBR was due to sea level decreases during the last el Nino. Exposure to air and the warmer near surface water is what threw the corals into a bleaching event. Mosts are not dead and will recover just fine after they regain some symbiotic zooanthellae.

coaldust

@mrmethane

That was just a test to see if you knew the Ph of seawater. You passed.

Your stomach is filled with a solution of 5% hydrochloric acid…that’s why vomit is bad for your carpets.

kaliforniakook

I’m pretty sure TooRight is being facetious. Sea water is alkaline – albeit barely.

Karl

@ Kip

Yup

Stomach Acid can be at a PH of 1.5

Kip Hansen: Human stomach acid is generally not more acidic than pH of 1.5, which means generally at most around .12% HCl. (.15% hydrochloric acid has a pH close to 1.4.) Most of the “dirty work” done by stomach acid is not by the acid itself, but by digestive enzymes that work in an acid environment. Check the Wikipedia article on gastric acid for a cite on pH being generally 1.5 to 3.5.

Pixie

pH is logarithmic and the strength is governed by the dissociation constant… therefore a pH change from 7 to 8 is a tenfold increase in alkalinity. Strong acids have a larger dissociation constant than weak acids. HCl is a strong acid because it is 99.98% dissociated when in solution.

The sea has a huge buffering capacity . Carbonic acid formed by the disolution of CO2 in water. Carbonic acid is corrosive to metals at pH less than 7.0 depending on its partial pressure. Partial pressures below 7.0 are not corrosive to metals. Partial pressure = Sytem pressure x % CO2…

Carbonic acid is a weak acid is one that only partially dissociates into ions. It is also very unstable and likes to form bicarbonates and carbonates.

The hydration equilibrium constant at 25 °C is called Kh, which in the case of carbonic acid is [H2CO3]/[CO2] ≈ 1.7×10−3 in pure water and ≈ 1.2×10−3 in seawater. Hence, the majority of the carbon dioxide is not converted into carbonic acid, remaining as CO2 molecules.

In a bottle of champagne a mere 0.003% of the dissolved gas is present in the form of carbonic acid. SO until the atmospheric pressure approaches that inside a bottle of champagne and oceans are bubbling like champagne i would not get excited.

4TimesAYear

@kaliforniakook “Sea water is alkaline – albeit barely.”

Ah, no. That scale works something like the earthquake scale. A ph of 8.1 is 10 times as basic as a ph of 7.1

Hot under the collar

Now they are literally taking the piss. ; )

Oh, and they should have made it clear for climate alarmist devotees (and Millennials) that you only do it when you are taking a shower!

Sceptical Sam

You’re right. They are.

Don’t they have a Lemon tree?

D. J. Hawkins

Oh wait, you mean you’re not supposed to shower seven times a day?!? Now I feel so foolish…

I live on a 2K USgal holding tank so we’re well practiced with yellow/brown. I also live on an Island of karst fractured limestone, in a town that insists on flushing septic septage to Lake Michigan.

barryjo

Are we to assume they are sending treated sewage into Lake Michigan?? Must be, otherwise the EPA would on them like stink on ……….

What is “treated sewage,” please?

The liquid fraction is separated from the solids. The liquid fraction overflows into the drain field invisibly. The solids are regularly collected and spread on a field.

You do know how a POWTS works, or a FAST plant?

Alan Robertson

That’s advice taken by someone who has never had to clean a toilet.

“It’s a dirty job but someone’s got to do it.” T-shirt motto at the shipyard where I worked my career on submarines, which holding tanks must be cleaned annually. It’s nothing compared to cleaning radioactive waste holding tanks.

Sheri

You just have to clean it more frequently. Other factors enter—my water is awful and causes yellow crude buildup in a week (due to sulfur content of the water) so I have to clean frequently, whether or not it gets flushed regularly. You could use one of those in-tank cleaners, but many void your warranty on the toilet so my guess is they could be a problem down the road. Living with a septic tank changes things, too.

Sea Pee

Call me mellow yellow but I have always peed in the shower (not in the bath though, not in the bath!) since I was a kid a) for convenience and b) to save water and I’m a baby boomer (that’s Boom Baby Boom to any millenials out there). So what?

AndyG55

Aim at your feet..

They say urine helps get rid of fungal toenail problems..

secryn

And the pain of jellyfish stings.

AndyG55

How very odd….. Why do you keep jellyfish in your shower. ?

wws

George Costanza – Pipes is Pipes!!!!

Burks Smith

In my town, St Petersburg FL, treated sewage liquid is recycled and distributed as “reclaimed water” to be used to water lawns via a dedicated piping infrastructure. The idea is to keep it away from waterways and the ocean where it promotes the growth of algae and other green plant life.

Samuel C Cogar

The average flush of a modern toilet takes about six litres of water, and the average adult pees about seven times every day.

So, iffen you take a shower seven (7) times every just for peeing purposes, how much water does that waste each day?

Karl

It’s about the one or two showers active people take that reduce flushing by 30%

jorgekafkazar

“If it’s brown flush it down.”

We here in Calizuela have been trying to take that advice for many years. He keeps coming back up. Must be those tana leaves…

rogerthesurf

We have a new modern toilet that is designed and equipped presumably to limit the water during flush.

Only trouble is, after an average dump, it takes at least three flushes to finish the most important part of the operation.

The world is going insane.

Cheers

Roger

http://www.thedemiseofchristchurch.com

Jer0me

But there is a plus side to this insanity. All those lovely virtue-signaling ‘eco stars’ on household goods. They’re very useful indeed.

Unfortunately, you have to buy the goods with the least number of stars. They’re the ones that actually work!

4TimesAYear

Exactly. We were so poor when I was growing up, that with 6 kids, we did not flush until it became a necessity. At least we has the good sense not to do it in the tub. There are safety features on toilets as opposed to tub drains.

icisil

Peeing in someone’s shower is a great way to not get invited back.

Stevan Reddish

Me: What’s the difference between toilet paper and a shower curtain?

Friend: I dunno – what?

Me: You’re not getting invited to my house!

SR

Especially if they are in it at the time!!

Karl

How will they know?

It leaves no residue, and unless you drank some strong coffee or ate asparagus, urine does not have a discernable odor — until it degrades to urea – and then ammonia

rogerthesurf

Karl,

I don’t know about the general populace, but if some one pees in my shower, I can distinctly smell it.

Cheers

Roger

http://www.rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com

Leo Morgan

And eventually ends up smelling like a wharfie’s piss corner.

lee

“The average flush of a modern toilet takes about six litres of water”. Mine only uses 4.5 for full flush. 3.0 for small flush. And generally follow the suggestion of Toneb.

lee

We got rid of our replica Victorian, close coupled toilet a few years ago during a bathroom refurb. It had a tank with 6+ litres of water and when it was flushed, nothing remained. It was barely ever necessary to use the toilet brush it was so efficient at its task. In 20 years it never backed up.

We replaced it with a modern toilet with a 4 litre capacity and variable flush, short and long. Great for urinating, quick short flush and it’s gone. The problem comes when one has a more substantial task; it has on more than one occasion (dozens) backed up because it can’t flush waste and toilet paper down at the same time. The solution is obvious, flush before cleansing (4 litres) flush after cleansing (4 litres) then finally, flush after using the toilet brush, every single time (2 litres).

Not very environmental, using 10 litres instead of 6 although I guess the savings made on a short flush might make up for the extra used less frequently. However, a simple short flush arrangement on the old Victorian toilet would have saved more water than our modern one can.

Perhaps ours is a badly designed toilet; but the whole subject is a standing joke in the UK, even mocked on popular radio.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7

Your experience is not unique. We had to have several graphic discussions with our two sons on proper papering and flushing technique to prevent backups. The basic instruction was flush early and often.

Another astonishingly bad design feature of our low-flush toilets is even with the reduced tank capacity, it is still greater than the bowl volume, which guarantees a backup will leave you with a mess to clean up.

I have used other low-flush systems that seem to do a much better job clearing out solid waste.

Years ago I read an article on how one company tests their toilet designs. They had to device synthetic feces which emulated size, shape and consistency of the real thing. As I recall, they based it on tofu.

DC Cowboy

We have the newer ‘low volume’ flush toilets and have the same issue. We have to flush twice and hold the handle down to drain the tank or we get a backup (about once every two weeks or so). I’m not sure how that ‘saves’ water, but, the government mandates the new toilets in order to ‘save’ water so.

higley7

Low volume toilets and flushing avoidance can cause sewer systems to back up at the municipal level, causing all kinds of efforts to unjam huge pipes. There is a balance between too much water and not enough. Too much for a flush has to be balanced by enough flush for the sewer system.

“I can’t fault their logic. If you think wasting water is damaging the planet, not flushing up to 15,000 litres every year is a substantial saving.”

The author does not understand that you are not going to save that 42 L of flushing a day if you, instead, take six showers a day. One would imagine six showers would mean a water use increase. Most people would only take one shower a day and thus only save 6 liters, or 2200 L per year, a far cry from 15,000 L

Sheri

There is massive hatred of “new” toilets, but the hatred is rarely based on reality.

JohnKnight

Mine’s variable, a swipe of the handle releases maybe a liter and holding it down releases more . . It originally had a maximum flush that was a bit wimpy, so I extended the overflow tube (?) about an inch with a snug fitting piece of plastic tubing and now the max is plenty much water . .

kaliforniakook

Yikes, Alan! I wasn’t fond of it, but I’ll never eat tofu again with that image in my mind!

Samuel C Cogar

Iffen you or yours are experiencing random “backups” after flushing your commode(s) …… and it is not being caused by the “user” using 1/2 of a roll of toilet paper for wiping up, ……. then the 1st thing one needs to check for is if the commodes “outflow” pipe is vented. (usually via a vent pipe thru the roof)

JohnKnight

PS ~ I think it’s prolly more like two liters, with one I don’t see taking a route that triggers a syphoning action, and the other refilling the liter or so in the bowl to begin with.

czechlist

Older home sewers were designed with appropriate “fall” to allow waste to float down the pipe to the main using more water than newer toilets.
Newer toilets may not provide enough water for waste to reach the main and cause buildup and stoppage.
.

4TimesAYear

Some of them don’t work well here, either. It’s why I always recommend keeping a 5 gallon pail handy 😉

David

I installed a 1-liter urinal in my bathroom. I say it’s for the environment (making it an easier sell to my SO), but it’s really for the cool factor.

waterside4

So when you have female guests are they supposed to do it standing ?
Just curious – or are you in California where anything goes.

old white guy

the more water used to flush the easier it is to clean the water of sewage. sooner or later more clean water is needed.

Jer0me

I have plans to do this with a house I may build (if investments pan out). The ease of aim and the abolition of the ‘seat up/down’ arguments are the main benefits I see. I hadn’t thought of water saving!

Sceptical Sam

lee,

Drop a brick into it and give it a small flush every time.

An Australian brick is about 1.5 litres by volume.

jorgekafkazar

A friend believed the propaganda and replaced her old toilet with a “low-flush” version, and only flushes about twice a day. This saved her $50 a year or less on her water bill, but she’s paid out hundreds of dollars a year to clear her drains.

drednicolson

As the old British chestnut goes, “Penny wise, pound foolish.”

Phillip Wayne Townsend

I remember hearing about saving water to prevent world drought while growing up just south of the Great Lakes, with nearby swamplands and artesian wells that necessitated everyone in the neighborhood having sump pumps pumping water into the sewer to keep the basements from flooding. Saving water where it is over-plentiful will not help the “world”.

Greg

Typical defective thinking…

The average American shower uses 17.2 gallons (65.1 liters) and lasts for 8.2 minutes at average flow rate of 2.1 gallons per minute (gpm) (7.9 lpm).

So assuming it takes you about a minute to pee, you actually use more water by peeing in the shower!

Some people can pee and chew gum at the same time.

jorgekafkazar

Yeah, but that chewing gum plugs up my drain.

I shower bath once a week, traditional Saturday night. Otherwise daily I hot tub that I am – so far – allowed to drain to the environment, and into which we do not P. I am an expert on a 2 minute five gallon shower.

Jer0me

You know all that gunk coming off you into the hot tub isn’t going anywhere, right? That’s like bathing in the same bathwater for ever….

You really should shower before using a hot tub, or even a pool, unless you like wallowing in your own dead skin & sweat.

South River Independent

Probably after, too.

James H in CA

CA has approved a gray water recycling system that flushes with the gray water, so no waste of potable water.
Those of us in the rural Sierra foothills, on a well and septic, don’t care. All of our water use eventually returns to the water table…true recycling and renewable.!

Karl

Silly,

I can wash my hair and void my bladder at the same time

Ed Zuiderwijk

As a result the waste will be much more concentrated when it enters the purification plant. This will upset the bacteria cultures breaking it down and probably lead to the production of massive quantities of ammmonia and other undesirable and damaging stuff.

Sheri

One can add the bacteria when necessary. It’s not a static thing.

Greg

Keep in mind that grout is actually porous and absorbs water, so it will absorb pee too. Not a lot, but some. That is why there needs to be a waterproof shower pan under the floor.

If you’ve ever demo’d a tile shower, the mortar bed never really dries out and is prety nasty.

If you’re going to pee in a tile shower, aim for the drain, otherwise you’ll wonder why your bathroom smells like pee.

Paul

“If you’ve ever demo’d a tile shower, the mortar bed never really dries out…”

Indeed. Modern showers have the waterproofing membrane between the bed and the tile to prevent that problem.

jorgekafkazar

“you’ll wonder why your bathroom smells like pee.”

Aye, there’s the rub.

4TimesAYear

Yep.

Nigel S

‘Save water bath with a friend’ used to be the official advice. I preferred those days.

http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2015/06/bathing-friend-extreme-drought-1976/

Is there an app for that?

Nigel S

Not only were there no mobile phones but landlines were a government (GPO) monopoly (unless you lived in Hull) and it took weeks to get a phone. But you know, we were happy in those days, though we were poor.

Nigel S

Hah! You thought you were poor, we used to live in a shoe box………………….

🙂

drednicolson

We didn’t even have a shoebox, on account of never buying shoes. Tried living in the bullet boxes we bought instead, but those were a might cramped. You’d wake up smelling like a butcher shop, too, on account of rubbing elbows on brass casings while pinching all those copper pennies. Dad always held out hope that one day he’d be a good enough shot that, like old Davy Crockett, critters would consider themselves shot and fall down at the sight of him, and he’d never have to buy bullets again. Too bad the only thing he ever put holes in was the neighbors’ cardboard shipping box. Rich folks, them neighbors.

Sceptical Sam

Pre-Weinstein.

We all did.

Now we put it all in our wife’s name, or something.

Jones

Should one have the shower actually running when doing the deed?

I’m just asking, for a friend.

Nigel S

Much better to pee in the basin if you really want to follow this path. The water from washing your hands provides a flush. (Sink in USA I think but in the UK that’s in the kitchen which I wouldn’t recommend).

Jones

Thank you kindly Nigel,

These are the technicalities that often elude me. My friend I mean.

I’ll also tell him to stop wetting the bed after a heavy night out on the beer. He doesn’t think that’s very ecological anyway. His wife gets awfully irate too.

PS. Note to self….stop peeing in the kitchen sink….

Erny72

I urinated in the sink the other night but I almost couldn’t because my grotty missus had left it full of dirty dishes.

It is funny how we all speak the same language but have no idea what each other is trying to say…

drednicolson

I’m rural enough than I can do the deed outside if I need to. The dog will always sniff around then take a pee himself on the same spot. If anybody complains, I can blame the dog.

As a youngster with no indoor plumbing in the farmhouse; when if it was raining, just needed to raise the window a crack and pee thru the crack. The rain would flush it away. (maybe)

I would have thought water is the ultimate in recycled products. Agreed there is no reason to use it where it isn’t necessary but the idea that not flushing the loo will save the planet is ludicrous.

I remember in the drought of 1976 on a boating holiday on the River Avon (that’s the one that flows through Stratford) remarking to the boatyard owner that I was surprised how much water there was in the river.

“Don’t worry,” he said. “As long as Coventry exists we won’t be short of water!” Well, it has to go somewhere!

This is a great point. You can’t waste water. You can ‘waste’ the efforts of the treatment plant, but the water itself just goes back were it came from.

This is bad for the UK. We have had 2 seperate waste water systems for decades, grey water and foul water. Mixing Foul waste with the grey waste is not a recommended idea. I’m sure a UK water expert will pop in to say exactly why, or educate me perhaps,

RS

Nigel S

No, there shouldn’t be ‘grey / gray’ water in the surface water sewer at all, that goes straight into the river or sea in many cases. It’s frequently done, connecting into rain water downpipes for instance, but not good practice at all. Grey water systems should be self contained and are usually used for irrigation etc. on site.

Many parts of London have old combined sewers courtesy of Sir Joseph Bazalgette (his close relative is responsible for the ‘Big Brother’ show, ironically reversing the flow) which are overwhelmed during heavy rainfall and overflow straight into the river.

http://londonwaterkeeper.org.uk/encourage-thames-water-tell-us-sewers-overflow

Andy

Many older properties in the UK have one waste water drainage system only, everything goes in it, rainwater, grey water, sewage. So, peeing in the shower is OK for some of us ;0)

Nigel S

You should not have any sinks, basins, showers etc. connected into the surface water sewer. If you have you may get a fine some time if you’re unlucky. You shouldn’t even, in theory, have the condensate from your condensing boiler connected to the surface water sewer although that’s an extreme viewpoint.

Francois Goedhart

I am a bit confused. Does this mean I have to take a shower every time I need to pee.
A better idea is not flushing the toilet every time you pee but say once a day.
It will boost the sale of environmentally neutral air fresheners and keep visitors away.

Nigel S

See the first comment by Toneb, standard advice.

icisil

My cat would get mad at me if I did that.

John from Europe

My girlfriend too..

Sceptical Sam

What’s a pussy for, after all?

Karl

I grew up with hippies – literally and we were encouraged to go pee outside because of septic tank.

Jer0me

Septic tanks thrive on pee, and need lots of water.

I’m no hippie (any more) but I pee outside cos I can with 10 acres of bush, and it saves me buying tankers of water.

chadb

Compare sometime the total amount of water spent on toilet flushes and compare it to the total amount of water spent on irrigation. Not even in the same ballgame. You could cut all residential water usage (flushing,bathing, cooking, and drinking) and barely make a dent in total water usage.
Non-solution to a non-problem

icisil

I used to work with a guy who kept a pee bottle underneath his desk in his office. He’d dump it out the window when necessary. I laughed thinking about the time he might forget to empty it, and the cleaning lady would find it.

icisil

How in the world did my comment end up here? lol. This was meant for the carrying around a pee bag comment somewhere.

jorgekafkazar

He only has to kick it over and break it once to make the practice a net loss.

Jer0me

I used to do this while staying on my brother’s boat on the river Cam. It’s one of the only rivers still allowing a ‘bucket and chuck it’ approach to waste. Saved emptying the chemical toilet, which is a major bonus!

menicholas

You guys are gross.
I hope you are all kidding with this peeing in bottles and sinks talk.

rckkrgrd

In many places, you have to pay for the volume of water used so it not a non-problem. I would really not call it an environmental priority, however. Using greywater, roof runoff etc. for irrigation makes economic sense. Peeing in the shower seems stupid when you could just go under your apple tree and provide some fertilizer at the same time. Just tell your neighbors to look the other way or enjoy.

ThinkingScientist

Who honestly doesn’t pee in the shower anyway?

Who pees in the bath? Anyone going to admit to that one?

lol

icisil

What a great idea. Save on water heating costs.

Erny72

I dropped the habit of having a leak in the bath when I was five, after a failed attempt to be the ‘human fountain’ to impress my cousins resulted in the squirting fresh uric acid into various facial orifii. Much to the amusement of my cousins*.
*see the comment further up about bath-with-a-friend; this was standard practice** when staying over at relative’s houses when I was a lad. It was more about saving time getting a gaggle of kids off to bed than about saving water, especially since much of the water ended up splashed on the floor or ceiling when mischievous cousins were sent to the bath together. I never really considered the extra energy expended in mopping/cleaning up after us, so I doubt it did much to save the planet.
**sharing the bath was standard practice, not do-it-yourself golden showers.

Personal transgressions aside, my two year old daughter has been known to displace bath water with more substantial anthropogenic extrusions and that practice certainly does not result in any water or energy savings once the subsequent extensive hosing down, bath sanitation and drain clearance efforts are taken into consideration in the water budget.

IT

My little kids would… I finally got them to take showers…

Yirgach

Why stop with a bath, how about a pool or even the ocean?

Roy Jones

“Why stop with a bath, how about a pool or even the ocean?”

If trying this in a swimming pool don’t use the high diving board.

menicholas

I do not pee in the shower.
Ever!
When anyone is looking.

Alan Esworthy

As I was growing up, my father taught me that the quintessential distinguishing characteristic of a gentleman was that he would not urinate in the shower, even if he was alone.

toorightmate

It should not belong before the same group of thickheads suggests we all get around with a bag – with sufficient volume for a day.

Karl

Just pee outside — on dirt — it converts to urea and contains creatine and is a great fertilizer.

Dodgy Geezer

It is VERY important to point out the fallacy here. Even Eric Worrall is falling into it.

The point is that letting potable water go down the drain is NOT ‘WASTING WATER’.!!! After that action, there is just as much water on the Earth as there was before the action. Indeed, water goes in a hydrological cycle – except for minute amounts in special cases, it is neither created nor destroyed. It can never be lost.

Now you ARE wasting something when you pour purified water away. What you are ‘wasting’ (I would say ‘using’) is the water company’s time and effort in storing the water, purifying it and delivering it to your home. This time and effort is not a scarce resource – it is the work you pay the water company for. And they are looking to profit from this.

The water company can make a profit in several ways. It can sell you more water at a fixed price, or it can put that price up and sell you the same amount for more money. Selling more water means investment in more infrastructure as a prerequisite, while upping the price involves no such investment. So they would prefer to do that.

In fact, what they would prefer to do is to sell LESS water per person, to MORE people, at a higher price. And to do that, they need to find some way of getting everyone to use less water. That way, they can expand their business without any investment at all. The water, after all, will never run out, as we have seen.

So long as people keep using the term ‘wasting water’, they are playing into the water company’s hands, and enabling them to make increasing profits while lowering the service per head that they provide…

Joe Wagner

AAND- an even MORE important point..

Most urban and suburban water drains in America lead to Wastewater treatment plants- which clean the water and in many cases send it back into the feeder streams for the regional water supply.

The only thing used is some chemicals and electricity….

So yah- you’re drinking recycled pee- no matter if you flushed or showered.

David Chappell

Ah, the miracle of homeopathy…

Louis Hooffstetter

Why drink recycled pee when you can drink it fresh?:
http://www.urinetherapy.in/Index.aspx

I’m surprised Stephen Colbert doesn’t advocate we all do this.

Greg61

My water is supplied by the local municipality. We have had water usage restrictions for years related to the ability to wash your car in the driveway and lawn watering. The excuse for the restrictions was to avoid capital expenditures to expand the supply due to increases in population, not a lack of available sources. As the per home usage dropped, they had to raise the cost per cubic meter because the revenue dropped. Typical government, less for more.

Sheri

The same amount of water remains. The only problem is how much water is available for what purposes. We cannot clean water fast enough at times. Then there’s the enviros insisting water go for bait fish in CA. There’s no water shortage—water remains on the planet in the same volume. It’s a matter of politics, mostly.

Allencic

The water that pours from your tap after having gone through a water treatment plant is basically a very dilute broth of dead bacteria.

David L.

It at least saves time.

MrGrimNasty

Another waste of water is the entire population being forced to wash all its recycling.

When I was at school we marveled at the films of efficient automatic bulk waste sorting and washing – half a century later this is no longer possible!

michael hart

I remember the stories my caving friends used to tell about wearing wet suits. You can guess the rest.

icisil

I never did that when I used to whitewater kayak in the winter, but I know friends did in their dry suits.

Pierre

Pee on a tree and no flushing is required!

mikebartnz

Make that a lemon tree as in The Worlds Fastest Indian.

CCB

Maybe they want us to pee in the garden to save on lawn fertilizer?

mikewaite

Lewandowsky and Mann are right in their shaming of sceptics . Here we have a sensible suggestion, approved by 97% of all climate scientists, and all you deplorable deniers can do is take the p**s.

Latitude

We’re on a closed loop…..well…toilet….septic

Gary

… the average adult pees about seven times every day.

I don’t have time to shower seven times a day.

Sheri

That was my thought. At most, 6 litres a day would be saved, not 42. That’s 2190 litres per year. Which is a TINY percentage of water used by most households.

Scarface

I have already been doing this for years. Women hate it though, so best to be a climate warrior when alone.

#Peetoo

Frank

“Saving” water has two sides to it. Back in the first decade of this century, the Southeast US had a prolonged drought. Here in Atlanta, GA, the main source of water is the Lake Lanier reservoir, which dropped so much that there were fears the intake pipes would be exposed. The news reports were so persuasive that water usage declined dramatically, so much in fact that the City of Atlanta Water Department had to raise the rates to pay their bills!

Frank

“Saving” water has two sides to it. Back in the first decade of this century, the Southeast US had a prolonged drought. Here in Atlanta, GA, the main source of water is the Lake Lanier reservoir, which dropped so much that there were fears the intake pipes would be exposed. The news reports were so persuasive that water usage declined dramatically, so much in fact that the City of Atlanta Water Department had to raise the rates to pay their bills!

Jeff Id

So in Michigan, they teach our kids that our state is a peninsula surrounded on 3 sides by huge bodies of fresh water. Then these wonderful public schools teach our kids that they need to “use” less water. Turn off the sink while brushing teeth, shorter showers etc…

So then I get to explain the truth to the kids that water isn’t used it is still water after it runs off them. We pump it from the ground, either right by the house or several miles away from the house, it runs into the sink or drain and then into the septic tank, a processing plant or something else and back into the ground.

The water is simply relocated not used. I’ve produced vast amounts of additional water in my life by chemical reaction than I’ve broken down. We all have.

Some areas of earth don’t have enough water to support the lavish lifestyles of the human animals but this isn’t my problem at all. Because we don’t live in an area like that but my son’s left wing idiot teacher drones on and on about conserving water – to save the planet of course.

George Costanza was ahead of his times. But he got in big trouble when he peed in the men’s shower at the gym.

rbabcock

I really have an issue with “saving water”. Water doesn’t get consumed like gasoline, it just goes down the pipe to somewhere else so you really aren’t “saving” anything.

If the water source is a lake or river, it typically ends right back there after treatment. The only time it matters is when it is being drawn out of the ground faster than it is being replenished or if the area is arid or in a drought situation.

In fact in our fair city which uses surface water as a source, the people running the water system were complaining about the low flow toilets not providing enough flow in the sewage system to get the solid waste to the treatment plants. They now have trucks systematically running pigs through the pipes to clear them to prevent backups.

Mickey Reno

Water is the most sustainable, recycled, reused substance on the planet (except, perhaps, for the individual oxygen molecules that make up O2 and O3 in the atmosphere). We drink and bathe in water micturated by our ancestors and dinosaurs.

The cyclical flow of water on our planet sustains our lives, and it should make every greenie and environmentalist weep for the sheer beauty of it. Then they should realize that carbon dioxide is similarly recycled, and that it may be even more indispensable to life than water, because it is building the much more complex carbon chains that make up our bodies, interacting with the life that makes up the food chain. Thinking of CO2 as pollution makes about as much sense as thinking of a rain cloud as a giant cesspool because it contains water that once got pissed out of someone’s bladder.

jorgekafkazar

“…thinking of a rain cloud as a giant cesspool…”

What a fine way to end a romantic interlude on a summer day. A loaf of bread, a jug of wine, reading poetry, then looking up at the clouds and saying, “You see those clouds? People peed all that water.”

Mike Bryant

When I was plumbing, a guy called me and said, “I gotta leak in my shower!” I said, “ Go ahead… it all ends up in the same place anyway.”

JustAnOldGuy

Forget the shower. Just pee on the lawn, flowerbeds and gardens. Not only will you ‘save’ water you’ll be saving the energy needed to produce fertilizer and the energy needed to process wastewater. Don’t have a lawn, flowerbed or garden? Fine pee in the park. If you end up facing prosecution you can always offer this study as evidence in your defense – https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/human-urine-is-an-effective-fertilizer/

icisil

Pee is a great fertilizer. Just don’t overdo it because you can easily kill plants.

Yirgach

It’s also a great pest repellent. I regularly pee around the edge of my garden to deter the local fox, squirrel and chipmunk population from their rape and pillage of my crop. Works great!

DonM

see Calvin & Hobbes comic….

“why are the plants on this side of the house dying?”

icisil

I love Calvin & Hobbes. Hopefully this is big enough. Reminds me of when I killed a bush once when I worked a 3rd shift job at a lodge.
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feliksch

I can’t pee in the garden directly because too many people could watch, but I collect it and use it there. The former junkyard/wasteland/thicket has become really fruitful within a few years.
Real environmentalism would see to it that urine and the rest were collected and used as manure instead of being flushed into the ocean.
Real environmentalists would see to it that all the deserts, wastelands and worn-out soils were fed carbon and covered with plants, so that the whole world could become a Garden of Eden. All “human-made” CO2 could be put into the ground and all alarmists could turn to useful work or careless play.

Erny72

I stopped to do just this the other day; there I was happily peeing on the lawn until the spectators started moaning and the referee sent me off.

jorgekafkazar

Pee turns the grass yellow unless you water the lawn right after. There’s no such thing as a free lunch.

Louis Hooffstetter

Also, don’t get caught. In most states, it’s literally illegal to take a leak in the woods. Here in SC, SECTION 48-1-90 of the Pollution Control Act of SC states:

“It is unlawful for a person, directly or indirectly, to throw, drain, run, allow to seep, or otherwise discharge into the environment of the State organic or inorganic matter, including sewage, industrial wastes, and other wastes, except in compliance with a permit issued by the (health) department.”

Not to mention the fact that you’re likely to be branded as a pervert.

Wharfplank

I’ve been saving the planet for 50 years…

Wharfplank

“It’s all pipes!” George Costanza

Tom in Florida

jclarke341

But what does any of this have to do with CLIMATE CHANGE?

michael

At least millennials will decrease their chance of getting athletes foot, if they pee in the shower. I wonder how many of them know that its not a bad thing to pee on their feet?

NorwegianSceptic

Why not do as the ancient romans and put out huge vessels to collect the stuff?
http://www.ancient-origins.net/history-ancient-traditions/money-does-not-stink-urine-tax-ancient-rome-003408

Louis Hooffstetter

A urine tax?! Please don’t give the politicians any ideas. They would tax us for breathing if they could get away with it.

Sara

I have an excellent and eco-friendly drain cleaner, using stuff you can find at the grocery store.

1 cup of salt (NaCl)
1 cup baking soda (sodium bicarbonate, also a good anti-acid if you have stomach issues)
1/4 cup cream of tartar (potassium bitartrate, baking stabilizer,from making wine)
Mix it well, divide equally for all the drains in your house.
Pour 2 (two) cups of boiling water into each drain and let it work.

You can flush the drains afterwards with more water.

Sheri

As long as one hits the clog ASAP, that works. I do like the idea, but sometimes things get out of hand before I notice (or I engage in wishful thinking that the clog will clear on its own). Then I do have to go chemical. Also, I read that boiling water will help keep the black crud from forming in drains. It does seem to help, but again, you have to keep on top of it. Chemicals may have been introduced because trying to keep on top of everything wasn’t panning out.

John Bell

Ever notice that the CAGW loons never all get together in a huge rally and go plant trees?

paqyfelyc

It makes sense, if you believe more water use make it worse for climate change (as this peeing advice suggest), you won’t plant trees because they will use huge amount of water. I guess.

Farmer Steve

Piss Poor. Urine was saved by the poor to sell at the tannery soaking the hide in acid helped in
hair removal. If you were poorer yet u didn’t have a pot to piss in.

JustAnOldGuy

Yes, it was also used as a mordant in dying and as a ‘fabric softener’ for freshly woven tweed which could explain the peculiar odor certain woolen goods have when they get worn in the rain. It could also be collected and used to produce saltpeter for the manufacture of black powder.

any true climate warrior/hero would also remove the drain strainer and….

Sheri

Please don’t go there….

you are not of the body. the savings in toilet paper alone could slow the rising oceans by .0000005 mm per year!

Louis Hooffstetter

We know we can reduce CO2 in the atmosphere by planting trees.
Maybe we could stop sea level rise by planting sponges in the oceans…

paqyfelyc

Another use of the fallacy that we “consume” water. We don’t. There is just as much water on Earth after we flush the toilet or don’t.
You can save the water because it is a way to save your wallet, but it won’t save the planet.

4TimesAYear

I don’t think this generation was taught the water cycle…..:)

Michael S. Kelly

This reminds me of the hotels (in the United States, anyway) that virtue-signal by giving guests the option of either having their towels laundered every day, or reusing them without laundering. A little card in the bathroom explains how we can save the planet by just using our dirty towels over and over.

There are 5,000,000 hotel rooms in the United States. If all were occupied all of the time, and everyone insisted on clean towels daily, the water use would amount to 37.5 million gallons per day (142.5 million liters.
A front-loading hotel washing machine can easily handle the towels from 4 rooms, and uses a maximum of 30 gallons per wash.). Similarly, the 315 million people in the US, urinating 7 times daily and consuming 6 liters per flush would use a whopping 13 billion liters (3.5 billion gallons) of water a day. So it sounds pretty dire, right?

Except that the United States consumes 500 billion gallons (1.9 trillion liters) of fresh water per day. Assuming each person does away with one flush (corresponding to one shower) a day would save 2 billion liters per day, or 0.10% of the country’s consumption. Foregoing clean towels for a day would reduce US water consumption by 0.0075%.

Given that water flow meter accuracy is typically +/- 1.5%, giving up towel washing and toilet flushing wouldn’t even register in the statistics.

Tom in Florida

Maybe washin’ them thar towels and peein’ ought to be done down at the crick. Just be sure you be peeing down stream of the washin’ spot.

Jer0me

Not just the US, all Asia and Australia too.

I always want to cross out ‘the planet’ and replace it with ‘money’ on those cards asking you to not get sheets or towels changed daily. The amount I get charged, I’m gonna have clean sheets and towels daily that I don’t have to wash myself for once!

JN

Have they calculated how much extra water you use while in the shower standing around taking a piss?
Bet its more than a flush.

Dave

Whoever chose that particular photo to accompany this article — is a genius. Very funny. Congrats.

joelobryan

6 liters/flush x 1 flush/day x 365 days/yr = 2,190 liters/yr

unless you shower multiple times per day or shower just to pee, which would defeat the purpose.

Walter Sobchak

Am I the only 70 year old man out here with prostate problems?

jorgekafkazar

I’m too busy to answer that right now, Walter. I’ll be with you in two shakes. Well, maybe five shakes.

7 times a day? And I thought I were starting to have a weak bladder.

vukcevic

@ HotScot
Also depends on the height of the water tank, the old Victorian reservoirs were usually up at five foot above the seat
Potential energy = m g h (mass x grvty.const x height)
When flushed potential energy is converted to kinetic energy = 1/2 m v^2 (one half of mass x velocity square)
Victorian sanitary engineers did their science (look up Joseph_Bazalgette )
London is multi-million city, all our brown and yellow stuff ends under this august edifice
http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/07/20/09/366F9D3B00000578-3698938-image-a-2_1469004047559.jpg
The Crossness Pumping Station was built by Sir Joseph Bazalgette as part of the capital’s new sewage system

Walter Sobchak

That is a sewerage plant? Wow.

vukcevic

the real engineering ‘pièce de résistance’ are the originally steam powered pumps
http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/07/20/09/366FB65A00000578-3698938-image-m-25_1469004367139.jpg
“The four original pumping engines are possibly the largest remaining rotative beam engines in the world, with 52 ton flywheels and 47 ton beams”

AndyG55

Its gunna take something pretty darn solid to lock that up !!

RoHa

That’s engineering as it should be done.

Resourceguy

Climate “Dear Abby” science has reached a new low. It’s like the Khrushchev Russian claim all over again of Americans taking showers too frequently and shortening their life span—while Russian life expectancy actually did fall.

Steve Zell

Since a shower uses more water than a toilet flush, peeing in the shower doesn’t save any water. Besides, a shower is the one opportunity to wash my feet, and I prefer soapy water to diluted urine for that purpose! Yuck!

D. J. Hawkins

Wash from the top down, pee when you first start. No problem.

Jer0me

Pee can get rid of athlete’s foot. It’s also sterile, and harmless when washed away.

Victorian era people created a learned disgust for bodily waste that was unknown before. It did help us combat things like cholera, so it helped.