Daily Water Usage- Julie Cardillo

In order to describe my hometown’s (Dunmore, PA) water supper chain, I consulted my father, who is a worker of the Pennsylvania American Water Company (a subdivision of the American Water System based in Mount Laurel, NJ)! After talking to him, he explained to me that the water comes from the Elmhurst Dam (Moscow, PA), and it feeds into the Lake Scranton Reservoir. Raw (untreated) water is then pumped directly to the Lake Scranton plant where initial pre chemicals are added (powdered-activated carbon, potassium permanganate, chlorine, alum, and lime). During this, the water passes through rapid mixing units, eight clarifiers, and eight filters. After being filtered, water flows through the plant’s clear well and post chemicals are added (chlorine for disinfection, lime for pH adjustment, and poly-phosphate for corrosion control). The water  flows to a storage tank (two 2.5 million gallons), in which gravity flows to major pumping stations by distribution pipes. Finally, the pumping stations pump clean water to the houses in my area through the distribution system. When the water goes down the drain, it goes to into the sewage distribution pipes that leads to the Dunmore- Scranton Sewer Authority. The sewer water then gets treated and then released into the Lackawanna River.
Water Chart

On February 8, I attempted to live on two gallons of water. I prioritized my two gallons of water in the areas that I felt most important (drinking and hygiene). First, I showered for 2 minutes when I woke up. Throughout the day, I did not flush the toilet until the end of the day, I only had one glass of water ( when I got thirsty I drank soda), I brushed my teeth once before bed, and I didn’t wash the dishes. I did not use water for my hands (I used hand sanitizer instead). At the end of the day, I still ended up using 15.06 gallons of water. I clearly failed this experiment considering the fact that I used my 2 gallons up by 9:00 am because my 2 minute morning shower used up 10 gallons of water. Attempting to live off of 2 gallons of water would be so difficult for me, and the results from my chart in part 1-b shows. Geography is definitely matters to water use because there are areas around the world that have a small supply of water due to the geology/ location of the land (i.e. the area is dry, the water is dirty, etc.) People in areas like this must use environmental governance when it comes to their water use, so they only use water in terms of survival (food and water). We (people who have good sources of water), too, should take environmental governance in our water usage. Many times, people think that a single or individual action such as one person showering less won’t make an impact. However, that one person can influence others to become apart of a collective action, where so much water can be conserved.

2 thoughts on “Daily Water Usage- Julie Cardillo

  1. Hi Julie, I’m Natalie, I found our blogs to be very similar. I’m from West Chester PA which is close to you and we both get our water supply from lakes. I like how you brought up environmental governance because it is important to realize how political conservation and usage of the environment is. Also, I related to your comment on individual impact because I came to the same realization during my experiment too. I too failed the 2 gallon challenge. Here is the link to my blog if you want to check it out:http://geog030.dutton.psu.edu/2016/02/09/natalie-hall-m04/

  2. Hi Julie, I’m Josh, and I found your experiment really interesting. The water used up during a shower is incredible and the fact that we use 10 gallons in 2 minutes like you did is crazy, when some people only get 2 gallons a day. Like you said, to live in those conditions would be such a tremendous shift to what we normally do we’d probably go insane. My blog is below:


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