Category: Quirky Helpers

Mississippi Madness

I’m sure most of you will have heard of this river at some point, but one flood in particular has put it in American history. 1927 was the year, and the state had seen several months of heavy rain. The Mississippi River flooded, along with many of its tributaries (streams that join the main river) and overwhelmed 27,000 square miles of land – which is the same amount of land needed today to grow today’s chocolate. To this day, it remains the most damaging river flood in US history.

Mellow Yellow

The Yellow River in China is often referred to as ‘China’s Sorrow’ and the fact that it has flooded 1,500 times over the last 3,500 years helps you understand why. The majority of these floods have also resulted in high loss of life. For example, in 1887 (quite a while ago), it is thought a flood may have killed as  many as 2.5 million people!

Interesting Iceland

Interesting Iceland

Let’s start with Iceland. They have a lot to talk about when it comes to the environment. Its capital, Reykjavik, sits on top of an extensive geothermal resource which provides heat for the buildings there, whilst hydropower (which is renewable) makes up the rest of the city needs. Reykjavik is the greenest city in Europe and soon, all its buses will be powered by hydrogen!

Have you ever heard of the Blue Lagoon? If you have, you’ll know I’m talking about a geothermal spa in Iceland. Here, people can bathe in water which is around 37-39oC. To compare that, the average summer in Britain can be around 18-20 oC!

Why Waste Water?

Now we’ve all heard people nagging us to turn off the tap whilst brushing our teeth or seen someone panicking to get that dripping tap fixed and some of you may be wondering – why? You probably understand that it saves water, but for the two minutes you are stood in front of the sink, you probably won’t realise the long term effects. Let me give you two examples:

Firstly, when you leave the tap running when brushing your teeth, you can waste up to 6 litres of water each minute! For a family, this means around 35,000 litres of water is wasted per year, per family and that’s really easy to change. All you have to do is wet your toothbrush, then TURN THE TAP OFF. It’s quite simple really, and can save you money too, as well as help save a valuable resource.

Secondly, if drip-drip-drip coming from your tap is common in your household, then you should get it sorted. A single dripping tap can waste 20,000 litres of water each year! Put it this way, that dripping tap can waste so much water, yet all you have to do is get it fixed – what are you waiting for?

There are other ways to save water too, and they don’t always have to be seen as a chore.

You could try doing these – and the beauty of the two below, is that they only need to be done once, and after that, the world reaps the benefits:

  • Replace your shower head with one that releases a lower amount of water but at a similar pressure to your current one (these are water efficient shower heads).
  • Put a hippo in the loo – well, not exactly. There are contraption called ‘Hippos’ which go in the cistern of the toilet, and each time you flush it, it reduces the amount of water you

Also, on a long term basis, you can try:

  • When you finish a drink, and there are ice cubes left – don’t throw them, but use them on plants (it’s only a small thing but every little action makes a difference)
  • Swap a bath a week for a 5 minute shower, this saves you money too
  • Wash up using a sink full of water, rather than running a tap as that wastes even more water.

There are plenty of other things you can do too – just give them a go!