We Are All Water

Clean, drinkable water is the essential natural resource humans need for survival. But as the 21st Century rolls on an astounding number of Americans seem oblivious to the danger climate change, pollution and wasteful personal, commercial and industrial uses pose on the world’s supply.

Ongoing conservation efforts range from placing greater restrictions on withdrawals from watersheds, such as the Great Lakes, and curbing consumer use by harvesting rain water. In arid climates installation of low volume flush, no water urinals and toilets are increasingly common, and modern shower heads are estimated to consume half as much water per minute than standard fixtures.

Oil, phosphorous (a major ingredient in many soap products), fertilizers and other toxic pollutants routinely enter our streams, rivers and lakes, rendering them unsafe for consumption. Green renewable energy sources coupled with alternative products with less or even none of these ingredients can make a huge impact.

Just how serious is the situation? Consider this: every person on the planet needs fresh water to survive. There are currently 7.6 billion people. By the end of this century the United Nations predicts it will rise to 11.8 billion, an increase of 4.2 billion (or more than 50 percent). Where will we find 50 percent more fresh water to meet the increased demand?

Perhaps the greatest stress on worldwide fresh water supplies comes from agriculture. On a global scale, farming accounts for 70 percent of fresh water consumption which usually comes from blue water sources such as rivers, lakes and groundwater. Lesser arid regions, those with plentiful rainfall, have an added source known as green water which often comes from evaporation.

In response, many farmers have adopted more efficient irrigation systems that improve the ability to keep water in the soil. The result is abundant yields with lower water consumption and less pollution.

Rainwater harvesting schemes include digging ponds, lakes and canals that allow for expanded water reservoirs as well as installing catching ducts and filtration systems on homes. Untreated, harvested and filtered rainwater can also be utilized for brown water needs such as toilets, home gardening and small scale agricultural irrigation.

The real obstacle, however, is how will all this affect the consumer in the real world? Many worldwide efforts are underway to ensure the earth maintains an ample fresh water supply well into the future and common strategies include pubic outreach campaigns, progressive water rates (charging more for greater consumption) or restricted outdoor use (such as lawn watering and car washing) during periods of low precipitation.

Universal water metering, which varies significantly worldwide, has quickly become a fundamental goal as it would make it difficult to waste water without paying extra fees. In this scenario the water department would monitor water usage by public, domestic and manufacturing services. Citing the fact that crop irrigation accounts for 70 percent of the world’s fresh water usage, many conservationists have suggested these efforts should be directed primarily toward agriculture. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that metering alone can reduce consumption by 20 to 40 percent.

The Clean Water Rule is a 2015 regulation (published by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) that was designed to clarify water resource management in the United States under a provision of the Clean Water Act of 1972. It defined the scope of federal water protection in a more consistent manner, particularly over streams that have a significant hydrological and ecological connection to traditional navigable waters, interstate waters and territorial seas. Often referred to as the Waters of the United States rule, which defines all bodies of water that fall under U.S. federal jurisdiction, it was published in response to concerns about the lack of clarity over its scope.

In an odd twist, multi-state litigation, spearheaded by then Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruitt (who now heads the EPA under President Trump), stayed implementation of the Clean Water Rule by court rulings beginning in 2015. In 2017 the Trump Administration announced its intent to review, revise and even rescind the rule.

In addition, implementation of waste water reuse systems, garden hose nozzles that shut off when not in use, swimming pool covers designed to reduce evaporation and automatic faucets that facilitate hands-free use are all ways for individuals to make a significant difference.

Last but not least, water conservation ideas can also save you money. Using less water will yield a lower water bill, so you and the planet (as well as future generations) all benefit from less water consumption.

How To Prepare For Your Big Move

Moving tipsBefore The Move

Keep these ideas in mind to make your move a little easier. Sometimes we feel doing it ourselves will save money. Moving is hard work and always takes longer than expected, especially if you move yourself. So, we recommend hiring a moving company. We use White Star Movers in Michigan, however, you can find a good local moving company near you on sites like Angies list.

  • Organize: Organize everything to the best of your ability — ahead of time. Box things up well and don’t think you can throw it all together at the last minute.
  • Label: Label everything. No, you will not remember. Make sure the movers know which room each item and your boxes go to.
  • Timing: Do you know moving company rates are higher at the beginning and end of the month? This is when most people move at the end of a lease or mortgage agreement. Try and schedule at time mid-month. And, if you can, avoid weekends.
  • Pair Down: Moving is a good time to weed through your stuff. If you’ve not used it in six months, get rid of it. You most likely don’t need it.
  • Photos: Some people have trouble letting things go. This is especially true if there is an emotional attachment. Take photos of the stuff you wish to hold on to the memories, but don’t need. If you have expensive or fragile items keep photographic records for insurance.
  • Copies: Make copies of important documents.
  • Categorize: Organize everything in categories.
  • Donate: Donate the stuff you don’t want. You will feel much better about letting the stuff go.
  • Disconnect: Schedule your disconnect times before the move. Do you need to connect at the new location?
  • Change your Address: Don’t forget to plan ahead and change your address. You can do it online through the postal service.

Here are a few questions to ask the moving company (source):

  1.  What are the insurance terms for the move?  Does the insurance cover the full value of the item?
  2.  Is the quote price an estimate or a “not-to-exceed” ceiling?
  3.  Are there any hidden fees?
  4. How long has the company been in business?
  5.  Is the moving crew employed by the company, temporary hires or casual laborers?

It doesn’t matter if you are moving your home or office. Big sofas or small coffee tables. Moving can become expensive, especially moving over state lines. Organization is very important. Plan things out and start on the process early. List all the items you want a company to move and organize the items you want to move on your own.


The best Royal Oak Shipping Service

Quick in and out shipping

If you found this post you are most likely looking for shipping services in Royal Oak Michigan. You have a few options. The various shipping outlets such as FedEx and UPS do have stores in Royal Oak. Unfortunately,  I find them hard to get to when I’m in a rush. Of course, I’m always in a rush.  Goin’ Postal Royal Oak  is easy to access from Woodward. This makes it convenient for both Royal Oak and Berkley residents.  I live in Berkley and work in Royal Oak.

I know you may not be familiar. The name may put you off a little too. I get it, get over it, your time, money and convenience is worth it. It’s a good franchise and the local owner has nothing to do with the name. The staff is very nice and makes sure I’m taken care of every time I visit the store.

They have a lot of services. Check out their website for a complete list. I like the fact that I can select from multiple shippers.  The Goin’ Postal team can usually find me a good price among the major shippers. The only down side is when I need to ship UPS. The UPS store usually has a better price for UPS shipping.  I usually go to Goin’ Postal anyway. It generally depends on the size of the package.

Mailbox Option

Although I don’t have one, I’ve noticed they have private mailboxes you can rent at the store. It’s worth considering if you own a small business. The link above goes to a list of reasons, I found on their webiste, for having a private mailbox.

If you have had an experience with this or any other shipper in the area, leave a note in the comments.

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