Module 4- Water Tracking and Usage


My hometown is Perkasie, PA which is located about an hour outside of Philadelphia, PA. For some people in this course from Doylestown, PA I am about 15 minutes from them. In Perkasie, partially rural and urban there is a public water system provided by the Borough of Perkasie, this is the way that most people in town, businesses, and schools are supplied with water. The water system in Perkasie draws from small waterways we have running closely to the city also reservoirs that are not to distant from the systems themselves. I however live on a small, rural farm for which my family has a private well system. The community as a whole mostly uses the public water system which means they also are in usage of the public sewer system which takes the water used away from the houses and is processed at a separate location to be put back into the water system and reused by the town again. Personally my house because we have our own well we also have our own sewer system in which our water is recycled and used again.



Use of Water: Number of times daily: Rate of Water Usage: Daily Usage (Gallons):
Shower 1 (10 mins) 3.8 gal/min 38
Cooking 2-3 (30 mins) 1 gal/use 30
Personal Hygiene 2 (1 min. per) 2 gal/min 4
Toilet 3 5 gal/use 15
Cleaning (Dishes, etc.) 1 (2 min. per) 2 gal/min 2
Drinking 4 .5 gal/use 2

Total: 91 Gallons/Day


The areas of water usage for this experiment are all of the above in my chart, showering, cleaning, cooking, hygiene, toilet usage, drinking, and cleaning. To start this experiment I would begin by prioritizing my water usage. I believe that my top priority would have to be consumption, meaning my daily water intake for my body. The next would probably be cooking and hygiene. Although it would be difficult, living with only two gallons of water available, I would need to limit myself on non-necessary daily water luxuries such as daily showers, laundry, cleaning, and even toilet usage. Some strategies I would use in this experiment are using the absolute minimal amount of water for each task and also having a way to catch the water after usage so I could purify it and reuse the available left. I believe that in our society this experiment would unfortunately fail, this is often due to our social “norms”. It is a social norm to shower daily to be presentable for school or work. Also to brush your teeth and keep your home clean, along with using the toilet. Unless someone spends their day not fulfilling the social norms I do not think it is possible to complete this experiment in the current society we live in. This expeiment compared to part B is the other extreme end of being limited on water, as of now which we are not limited and use water as we please. Geography matters relating back to my earlier statement in which I talked about society “norms”, in countries in which the water resource is limited also have different norms then us, potentially changing the amount of water they are required to use on a daily basis to fulfill the social norms.


Ben Ceci – Module 4 – Ways We Use Water

1 – A

The water supply chain in my hometown of Greenwich, CT is different for different people. Some use a well while others use water from the town. At my house, we have a well on site. When we bought the house, we did a lot of renovations and additions and at that time, in 2000, we drilled a private ground water well. This type of well absorbs groundwater after rainfall. Then a submersible pump with a motor pulls the water out through a plastic tube / pipe and into a blue pressure tank and then finally into the plumbing system in the house. Once the water goes down the drain, the wastes go through a main sewer line which comes out of one of the sides of the house and goes into a septic tank in the ground. Then most of the solids settle until the liquid goes into a drain field where pipes buried in the ground that have holes in the bottom. The water then comes out of the holes and goes into the ground. Every 2 – 4 years, a septic tank should be pumped to avoid clogging.


1 – B
Activity           Time / Repetitions      Water Per Use        Water Usage Per Activity
Shower                     1 x 7 mins           2 gallons / minute            14 gallons
Brushing Teeth         2 x 2 mins           1 gallon / minute              4 gallons
Drinking                    1 gallon jug          1 gallon                           1 gallon
Flushing                    5 flushes              3 gallons / flush               15 gallons
Washing Hands         6 washes             1 gallon / wash                6 gallons
Washing Dishes       1 x 10 mins       2 gallons / minute        20 gallons
Laundry                    1 Load               5 gallons / load                 5 gallons
Total Water Use:                                                                         65 gallons


1 – C

Living on 2 gallons of water a day in the summertime, or in a geographic location that is very hot, such as Mozambique or Haiti, would be very difficult. The high temperatures cause you to sweat more, which then calls for more showers and also for more drinking water so that you do not get dehydrated. If I had to do this, I would focus on hygiene and drinking water the most. I try to drink about a gallon of water a day but I think that I could do with half of a gallon if trying to cut back. I would then try to use .75 gallons for showering and use just enough water to wash my hair and body 3 times per week. I would use paper and plastic utensils or possibly no utensils at all to cut down on the washing time. I would also try to use the bathroom outdoors and not flush the toilet because at 3 gallons per flush, it all adds up. That leaves me with about .75 gallons to brush my teeth, and wash my hands, dishes, and clothes with. If I shut the water off when I brush my teeth and in between washing my hands and the dishes, I think that I could manage that. I would definitely be looked at as the smelly, dirty kid in the class and it would require a huge lifestyle change. I don’t know how long I would last in those conditions and this activity and part b combined really made me open my eyes and see how fortunate we are. When you count how much water you use per day and then see how much you can cut back on, it really is eye opening and we should all make a conscious effort to use less water. God bless those people in Mozambique and Haiti. That is unacceptable and something should be done to help them.

Syed Amirul – Water Tracking & Usage

1a-My hometown of Seremban, Negeri Sembilan which is located south east of Peninsula Malaysia is managed by Negeri Sembilan Water Company (SAINS). Their main source of water comes from a large, unnamed water catchment area in Pantai District, just half-hour off the state’s capital. The watershed is feed from rain water and rivers from surrounding hills. These water are then channeled through aqueducts to Ngoi Ngoi and Terip River Water Treatment Facilities where there’s dams to control and contain the treatment process. From there, treated water are distributed to 350,000 households through storage tanks. Each districts have around 10-25 of these tanks and sum up to 100 tanks for the whole city. They also utilizes high-powered water pumps to to help with the distributions where gravitational system doesn’t work in certain areas. Finally, households such as my family are provided with clean, quality water via an underground main line that the city and municipal bodies had provided us with. The website of SAINS was pretty simple but I got some of the insights from Google Maps and connect the searches intuitively.


1b- For this activity I chose a Monday because that’s my busiest day and calculated an estimate for my water usage for the whole day. Here is my estimation table:

Activity Number of Times Water Used
Shower 15 minutes 30 gallons
Tooth brushing 2 2.5 gallons
Toilet Flush 3 15 gallons
Drinking 5 3 gallons
Cooking 2 3 gallons
Laundry 1 30 gallons
Dishwasher 1 6 gallons
Hand washing 5 5 gallons
  Total 94.5 gallons

1c- The next day I got myself 2 gallons of bottled water for the experiment. First thing in the morning, I took a glass of water for tooth brushing and I skipped shower so I still have plenty of water left. Halfway through the day I have emptied a gallon from going to the toilet and drinking alone. I tried cooking foods that doesn’t require much water but still that and washing the dishes took up a lot of my remaining water. By around 8 p.m., I’ve finished all of 2 gallons of my water. Most of my usage are for drinking and personal hygiene. During the experiment when I had to control every single usage of water, I start to think about the times when I didn’t have to think and realized how much water I’ve wasted before. From the experience, I know take extra attention to reducing my usage by turning off the faucet while brushing my teeth or in between rinsing my dishes. Even though I did not succeed to last a whole day with only two gallons of water, I know have a deeper appreciation towards water, which I have taken for granted my whole life.

Geography certainly plays a vital role on water usage. It takes a lot of human involvement to alter the environment to provide us with the necessary clean water. From reading other blog posts from different geographical backgrounds, it’s prominent that almost everyone with decent water usage comes from highly populated area with proactive governments.

Water Usage – Hollabaugh


My hometown is Sunbury, PA. According to our municipality, the primary source of our water comes from a dam located along Little Shamokin Creek. The dam contains a 3 million gallon reserovoir. This reservoir then uses gravity to feed into a 17 million gallon, and 25 million gallon reservoir. During dry seasons, the Susquehanna River is used as a secondary source. The Susquehanna River is one of the longest and widest rivers in the US, and as such is most likely used as a water source for other cities that lie along its banks. The water from either of these two sources is treated at a filtration plant, and sent through 35 miles of underground pipe to the residences of Sunbury. The transmission and distribution service has nearly 5000 connections that helps to serve a population of nearly ten thousand.

b. Total of about 77 Gallons/day



If I had to make an attempt at living on 2 gallons of water for a single day, I would have to prioritize mater water usage, and in some cases possibly reuse it. Obviously I would have to eliminate the dishwasher, toilet use, and shower from my already existing regime. I would have to use an outdoor latrine in place of the toilet use. Drinking water would be the highest priority, followed by cooking, and then cleaning. I know that I can boil water in order to reuse it for drinking or cleaning purposes, so the only aspects that would matter would be tasks that require me to dispose of the water. These would probably only include cleaning (i.e. brushing my teeth, dishes, or bathing), or consumption where I can’t get it back. In order to make the most of the 2 gallons, I would save all of the cleaning until the end of the day, except for brushing my teeth once in the morning. My water schedule for the day would consist of the following;

  1. Brush teeth and drink a glass of water (-0.125 gallons, 1.875 remain)
  2. Pasta for lunch while collecting, and reusing the strained water to boil for distilled water. Leave dishes for end of the day. 2 glasses of water to drink. (-0.5, 1.375 remain)
  3. Essentially the same concept for dinner (-0.5, 0.875 remain)
  4. With the remaining water I would clean the dishes, and then give my self a sponge bath. I would brush my teeth, and any remaining water would be used to wash my hair. (-0.875, 0 remain)

This would most likely succeed, and would be possible for everyone regardless of where they live. This experience greatly differ from part 1-b. It requires much more work on my end for the same results, which really comes down to being a luxury. Water use however greatly depends on location. Some western state experience droughts often and need to limit their consumption, while eastern states use it like an infinite resource. Then there are some developing nations who don’t have the luxuries of indoor plumbing, and have to retrieve the water from streams with buckets daily, which essentially turns into the schedule I created.

Water Trackage and Usage

1a.) South Bend, Indiana Water Supply

My hometown is South Bend, Indiana, which ironically, is in Northern Indiana, about an hour and a half east of Chicago and home of the University of Notre Dame. South Bend gets its water from the South Bend Water Works, which maintains 32 deep wells and uses over 545 miles of water main (water pipe lines) in order to deliver water to businesses and households. These wells are the source of water and is the network of water main used to distribute water in a distribution system. Every street has a water main in the street that serves water through all the neighborhoods, and each building has smaller pipes connected to the water main, called a service line, that supplies water to individual households/companies. In 2008, South Bend installed an array of intelligent sensors in an effort to increase efficiency of the sewer system. This allows for South Bend to migrate its sewer system to the cloud, thus preventing polluted water from going into the river and thus saving hundreds of millions in new pipes. Fun fact is that South Bend was the first city in the world to do this. After water is used within a household, South Bend has a combined sewer overflow (CSO) system which captures waste from homes, businesses, and storm water thats streamed from street sewers, including gutter downspouts. Then, once theres a large amount of rainfall, the CSO system becomes overwhelmed and overflows and sends raw sewage into the St. Joseph River.


1b.) Monday!

Flushing the toilet                             3 gallons

Washing my hands                           1 gallon

Brushing my teeth                            2 gallons

Taking a shower (20 mins)             100 gallons

Shaving my legs                                1 gallon

Filling up my water bottle                24 oz = 0.1875 gallons

Flushing the toilet 2                          3 gallons

Washing my hands 2                                    1 gallon

Filling up my water bottle 2                        0.1875 gallons

Flushing the toilet 3                          3 gallons

Washing my hands 3                                    1 gallon

Brushing my teeth                            2 gallons

Washing my face                               1 gallon

Total water used –                             118.375 gallons


1c.) Tuesday!

Today, I tried to live on only two gallons of water for the day. Seeing that a huge majority of my water usage went to showering, I did not take a shower today. This cut me down to only 18.375 gallons to cut down. I also did not shave my legs again, so that cut me down to 17.375. I realized I could reduce my water use if I mainly, did not flush the toilet, and basically just watched my water usage while doing daily hygienic tasks, such as washing my hands, brushing my teeth, and washing my face. To cut down on flushing, I actually did not flush for the day (so sorry to the girls I share the communal bathroom with in my dorm). This reduced my usage to 8.375. To was able to cut 3 gallons from this by not washing my hands after bathroom usage but instead using hand sanitizer and then another gallon by not washing my face at the end of the night by using a wipe. At this point, I was at 4.375 for my usage. I only filled up water once that day and then just brushed my teeth in the morning and did not at night before going to bed. My total use was 2.1875 gallons of water a day. I consider this success, however, realize is very unhygienic and now understand how difficult it truly is to live off so little when the day before I had used so much. Geography matters in water usage because of the tragedy of the commons. Water usage is the same concept where individuals, especially the United States, seen within the water usage chart, acts selfishly in order to maximize our own personal gains – we overuse water while other countries are restricted on their use. Thus, we can undertake individual action in order to decrease our water usage. Like my hometown, we can also take collective action to install sensors that reduce pollution, which helps the environment and allows for government tax money to be saved by the millions in order to work on other important initiatives.



Module 4: Water usage


The city I am from is Seoul located in South Korea. My city runs its water supply by draining out the river water and is run by the Seoul Metropolitan Government. The water we use is named “Arisu” and it used to be the name of Han River, the main river source for water supply, and now stands for Seoul’s brand of tap water. To be more significant, ‘Ari’ means big in Korean traditional language and ‘Su’ means water. Furthermore, as Seoul has four distinct seasons, precipitation gap between the seasons leads to defined differences in the water quality. Also, as Han River became more polluted by the people of Seoul, the city is strictly managing and developing the water quality. According to the Seoul Metropolitan Government, the purification of water work in this order: Intake stations, Pre-chlorination, powdered activated carbon, mixing basins, condensing stations, depositing reservoirs, filtering stations, advanced water purification facility, post-chlorination to discharging stations.



Record of water usage on February 5th 2016 (Friday)

Activity Amount of water used (gallons)
Shower (Morning and Night combined) 5 gallons * 10 minutes * 2 times = 100 gallons
Bathroom (Toilet): 8 times 1.6 gallons * 8 = 12.8 gallons
Drinking (water bottle used) ½ gallon
Brushing Teeth (2 times) 1 gallon * 2 = 2 gallons
Face cleansing (2 times) 1 gallon * 2 = 2 gallons
Washing dishes (1 time for dinner) Approximately 27 gallons
Cooking (soup and rice) 1 gallon

Total = 145.3 gallons per day



If I were to live in an area where water usage is restricted to two gallons per day, I think it would be hard for me to live the way I used to and would start to define where I should use water or not. In this case, I think I would prioritize the water consume and my sanitation usage. Human basic needs are food, shelter and clothing. Therefore, I would place my water consumption more than any other needs I have to use. I would drink less than I used to but still put in on the top of my needs. Also, I would definitely shower shorter and shower within three or four days just to help myself to stay clean. Brushing teeth would still be essential for me, therefore I would try to use minimum of water to clean my teeth. For cooking, I would try to cook without water. Moreover, I don’t think I can use water for laundry or washing dishes. In the end, even after the reduction of water usage, I would most definitely fail to live this life. Comparing this life to the daily life I had, there is approximately 143 gallons of water difference. Therefore, I will fail to live this life. As shown in 1B, I place my sanitary on top of my priorities but if I had to live with 2 gallons, I would completely shorten in down so water consumption could be provided. Through this experience, I have learned and realized that geography is essential for water use. If there aren’t water resources around the geographic scale, it is hard to consume and use water in our lives. Not only does the geography matters, sadly socio-economic status matter as well.