Press release from the City of Hendersonville:
What would your day be like if you had no access to clean water?
This is the question the City of Hendersonville is proposing as they join water utilities, elected officials, community leaders and businesses from across the country on Wednesday, Oct. 23. Imagine a Day Without Water is a nationwide day of education and advocacy about the value of water.
“The infrastructure that brings water to and from homes and businesses is essential to the quality of life and economic vitality of the City of Hendersonville and greater Hendersonville area,” said Mayor Barbara Volk. Mayor Volk proclaimed October 23 as Imagine a Day Without Water in the City and commended Hendersonville Water and Sewer staff for their work in providing clean water to the area.
The goal of Imagine a Day Without Water is to promote conservation and awareness of the enormous undertaking it can be to provide clean water on demand to focused populations. Turning on the tap for clean, safe drinking water, and flushing the toilet with no second thought about what happens to wastewater, are actions most Americans take for granted every day. Lee Smith, Utilities Director at the City of Hendersonville, provided information about the area’s water usage and supply.
“In 2018, Hendersonville water customers used 7 million gallons of municipal water per day or roughly 2.56 billion gallons per year,” said Smith. “This amount is enough to fill the entire Empire State Building 9.25 times.” Smith pointed out that most people do not think about where that water comes from until there is an issue, drought or disruption in their service.
Before coming through a Hendersonville water customer’s faucet, water is captured at one of three intakes, two located in Pisgah National Forest and one located on the main stem of the Mills River. Water arrives at the City’s water treatment facility where it is treated with a conventional water treatment process and then pumped into the City’s distribution system consisting of nearly 700-miles of pipeline.
Counties across North Carolina are currently in varying stages of drought with Henderson County being classified in a moderate drought level, according to the NC Drought Monitor as of Oct. 15. As a result of lower than normal water supply levels from the Mills River, a Stage 1 Water Shortage Advisory was issued by the City of Hendersonville on Sept. 28 at 12:01 am. The Stage 1 Water Shortage Advisory, consisting of voluntary conservation efforts, remains in effect.
The Imagine a Day Without Water campaign encourages the public to participate in conservation efforts throughout the year regardless of if water shortage advisories have been issued.
Seth Goad, Environmental Services Coordinator at the City of Hendersonville, has provided simple ways to save water and participate in the City’s Water Conservation Rebate Programs:
- An automatic dishwasher uses 9 to 12 gallons of water while hand washing dishes can use up to 20 gallons. Always make sure the dishwasher is fully loaded before running.
- Install a high-efficiency clothes washer and make sure the washer is full before running. (High-efficiency clothes washer rebate)
- Put a bucket in the shower while you’re waiting for the water to warm up, and use the water you catch for watering plants, flushing the toilet, or cleaning.
- Install a low-flow showerhead. This type of showerhead typically uses 12.5 gallons or less during an average 5-minute shower.
Spend less time in the shower.
- Install a high-efficiency toilet. (High-efficiency toilet rebate)
- Let pee be – only flush #2.
- Proper household maintenance of faucets, toilets, showers, sinks, etc. will reduce the likelihood of leaks. Water customers are provided with a free AquaHawk alerting program that shows water usage levels sends alerts when usage indicates a leak. Go to https://hendernc.aquahawk.us/login to sign up your account.
- Participate in the City of Hendersonville’s Rain barrel Program.
- If you must water your grass or trees, water them more heavily, but less often; this saves water and builds stronger roots. Water during the coolest part of the day to lessen the impact of evaporation. On average, lawns require only 0.25 inches of water per day or 1.25 inches of water per week in warm weather. (Smart irrigation systems rebate)
- The City of Hendersonville also offers a customer-side shut off valve rebate program. This feature can help save water during an active leak and allow customers to shut off service on their side of the meter if they plan to be away on vacation or gone for an extended period.
“Our Hendersonville Water and Sewer staff take great pride in providing excellent water and wastewater services,” said Lee Smith, Utilities Director. “We hope that by imagining a day without water, our customers will be more aware of the water supply and delivery infrastructure and take steps to conserve this vital resource.”
Additional Water Conservation Resources are available on the City’s website at https://www.hendersonvillenc.gov/water-conservation.