If you think you use less water than the average American, National Geographic‘s Water Footprint Calculator may prove to be an eye-opener. The simple interface asks users to answer a few questions about their lifestyle: how many three-ounce servings of beef do you eat in a week? How much do you spend on clothing? Do you flush after you pee? (Yes!) Answer honestly and you’re presented with a readout of how many gallons a week you use, and how it stacks up against the average. The real fun (and real point of the calculator) comes now, as you play with the readouts to see if you can save at least 20 percent a week. Eat less pork (576 gallons of water to produce one pound)? Drink less milk (880 gallons of water to produce 1 gallon of milk)? Leave out a few showers a week?
The infographic on foods and how much water they require to produce is particularly interesting. We’ve all heard how ridiculously wasteful beef is to produce; what’ll really blow your mind is how water-guzzling coffee, tea, cheese, and chocolate are.
Just sign me: If it’s yellow, let it mellow.