Monday, July 9, 2012

Conserving water in dry conditions

The heat has abated a bit here in southern Wisconsin but the Badger State is still dealing with near drought conditions in southern Wisconsin. Many are thinking of ways to conserve water. The city of Madison Water Utility has some great ideas:
  • Unless you have a newly sodded or seeded lawn, stop watering it. Established, healthy lawns can survive several weeks of dormancy during summer with little or no water. If your garden needs water, limit loss to evaporation by watering early in the morning or later in the evening. Make sure you are not watering your driveway or the street.
  • Inside the home, operate automatic dishwashers and clothes washers only when they are fully loaded, or set the water level for the size of load you are using.
  • Repair leaks in fixtures such as toilets and faucets and avoid letting the water run unnecessarily for other household uses in the kitchen and bathroom. 
The US EPA WaterSense program has some additional ideas:
  • Showers use less water than baths, as long as you keep an eye on how long you've been lathering up!
  • Keep a pitcher of drinking water in the refrigerator instead of letting the faucet run until the water is cool.
  • Wash the car with water from a bucket, or consider using a commercial car wash that recycles water. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

It's hot, hot, hot!

In the Midwest and throughout many parts of U.S., a dramatic heatwave has descended and doesn't seem to be leaving anytime soon. To get you through the long, hot days, we've put together some resources that may be fun and may prove useful:
  • For Fishermen/women that don't mind the heat: Fishing in Wisconsin
    (from the Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources) 
  •  For those interested in getting the right SPF: Consumer Guide to Sunscreen
    (from the US Food and Drug Administration)
  • For those that want to buy the most energy efficient air conditioner: Energy Star Program
    (from the US EPA)
  • For those that want to explore the Great Lakes from the comfort of their air-conditioned living room: The Great Lakes Circle Tour
    (from UW Sea Grant)
This list could go on forever. Do you have any suggestions on how to ope with the heat? Send an email to and we'll post an update.

Stay safe out there!