Assessment of Water Usage and Conservation Concerns on Carleton Campus, Dalhousie University
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The primary objective of this research project was to determine the amount of water being wasted though dripping faucets, due to mechanical and behavioural error, on the Carleton Campus at Dalhousie University. In addition, general attitudes towards the importance and practices of water conservations at Dalhousie University were investigated within the Dalhousie community. Based on the findings, recommendations on water conservation strategies regarding dripping faucets were made in order to reduce Dalhousie University’s over all water consumption. Being an environmental leader within the Halifax community, Dalhousie University is committed to reducing their water consumption and increasing their water use efficiency. By 2020 Dalhousie University is aiming for a twenty-four percent reduction in personal consumption of water and waste produced by all students. In order to achieve our research goals and help Dalhousie University meet its water conservation target, a water audit was conducted to determine how much water was being wasted per year by dripping faucets and what types of aerators were being used within the Dentistry Building and the Tupper Building on the Carleton Campus. Intercept surveys with students attending Dalhousie University were used to determine attitudes toward water conservation, and willingness to contribute to conservation initiatives. In addition, face-to-face interviews with maintenance staff were conducted to uncover potential problems that may have been overlooked. The results showed that there was minimal water wastage due to public leaking faucets on Carleton Campus. Out of the observed leaking faucets the majority were caused by behavioral leaks compared to mechanical leaks. However, in comparison to the total number of faucets surveyed, the number of behavioral leaks was significantly low. This correlated to the positive findings of the student intercept survey where the majority of students strongly agreed that water conservation was an important issue globally and within Canada. It was recommended to the Office of Sustainability that all faucets should be updated with low flow aerators and automatic taps should be implemented. Finally, a comprehensive water audit should be conducted to further investigate water wastage on Carleton Campus.