We are fortunate to live on this beautiful island surrounded by many environmental perks: oceans, beaches, marshes, beautiful plant life and flowers, and abundant wildlife.
We’re also fortunate to live in a country where we can enjoy conveniences that people in other parts of the world find difficult to imagine. A store that’s just a quick drive (or walk) away has a seemingly endless supply of fruits, vegetables, and food of any kind. That same store has an entire aisle devoted solely to water.
We’re also in a part of the world where Mother Nature occasionally forces us to remember the value of water. When a hurricane is approaching, that water aisle becomes the most popular spot in the store.
It’s easy to take water for granted when access to clean, fresh water takes a simple twist of the wrist. Indoor plumbing, clean tap water, a secure water infrastructure — those are the common conveniences we take for granted.
On October 23rd, we are asking residents of Hilton Head Island and customers of Hilton Head PSD to participate in the fifth annual “Imagine a Day Without Water.” This day raises awareness and educates America about the value of water. The reality is, America’s water infrastructure is aging and failing. An investment in our drinking water and wastewater systems is essential to our national health, safety, environment, and economic prosperity.
A day without water means firefighters can’t do their jobs, hospitals would be unsanitary, and no one could wash dirty dishes or clothes. Living without water is an economic crisis too: a single nationwide day without water service would put $43.5 billion in economic activity at risk.
At Hilton Head PSD, we work with this most precious resource day in and day out.
We take water conservation seriously — even making it part of how Hilton Head PSD operates. The PSD annually recycles more than 1 billion gallons of wastewater into beneficial recycled water. It then plays a vital role in the island’s economy and ecology by providing irrigation water for 11 golf courses – thereby conserving precious drinking water. Recycled water also is used to nourish wetlands in Palmetto Hall and Hilton Head Plantation.
Additionally, public education on water efficiency and environmental conservation is an important part of Hilton Head PSD’s values. We implemented an online water usage portal where customers are alerted to possible leaks and over usage. The PSD recently completed the island’s first-ever satellite based leak detection – resulting in the identification and repair of leaks that saved 7 million gallons of water per year.
On Imagine a Day Without Water, we ask everyone to consider what their day would be like if they couldn’t turn on the tap and get clean drinking water, or if you flushed the toilet and wastewater didn’t go anywhere. What would that day be like?