Do you leave the tap on while you brush your teeth? If so, you might want to read this article from the Huffington Post:

Nearly one in 10 watersheds in the United States is “stressed,” with demand for water exceeding natural supply — a trend that appears likely to become the new normal, according to a recent study.

“By mid-century, we expect to see less reliable surface water supplies in several regions of the United States,” said Kristen Averyt, associate director for science at the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado-Boulder and one of the authors of the study. “This is likely to create growing challenges for agriculture, electrical suppliers and municipalities, as there may be more demand for water and less to go around.”

According to Averyt’s study, the agricultural industry uses the most water and causes the most stress on regional water sources. In certain parts of the country though, electrical power plants represent the highest demand due to the large amounts of water they need to generate power. Although the researchers see trends pointing towards stabilizing water demands, climate change may off-set this and further deplete water supply in the country.

Of course, households also consume a lot of water and they’re the best place to start conserving it. For starters, don’t use a different glass every time you drink. Using one glass throughout the day means there are less dishes to do, and thus less water to consume. Here’s another tip: after steaming or boiling vegetables, wait for the water to cool then use it to water your plants.

Getting an efficient storm water management system, like HydroLogic’s StormChamber, can also be a water saver. Often known as storm water BMPs (short for best management practice), these large chambers collect excess rainfall which you can then use to water your lawn or wash your car. BMPs will also protect your house against flooding, which will be useful when the heavy rains come down.

As the population continues to grow, so will the demand for water. However, being mindful of your water consumption and recycling water (like using a stormwater management BMP system) will ensure that future generations won’t be parched.

(Info from Nearly One In 10 U.S. Watersheds Is ‘Stressed’; Demand For Water Outpacing Supply: CIRES Study, The Huffington Post, September 24, 2013)