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'We all need to make changes'

THE new Harpenden Mayor has called on residents in the town to save water amid fears of drought.

Councillor John Chambers said: "We have all heard about the shortage of water on the radio and television but it really is time to take some notice and do what we can to help the situation.

"Last year was the third driest year on record, much drier than the hot year of 1976.

"Every resident of Harpenden can help and if we all make very small changes this could make a difference."

Harpenden Town Council recently installed a tank the size of a large car to collect rain water for the town's hanging baskets and flowerbeds, which have also been supplied with water-retaining capsules.

The council has now come up with ten ways residents can do their bit to save water: l Sort out dripping taps just one can waste 90 litres a week.

l Keep a jug of water in the fridge to avoid running the tap to get a cold drink.

l Take a shower instead of a bath it can use only one-third of the water.

l Many pre-1993 toilet cisterns use more water than current models; place a brick in your toilet cistern to reduce the amount of water wasted flushing.

l Use dirty water from cleaning out fish tanks on houseplants it's rich in nitrogen and phosphorus, making excellent fertiliser.

l Wash vegetables and fruit in a bowl rather than under a running tap.

l Throw cotton wool and tissues in a waste bin rather than flushing them down the toilet.

l Two half load programmes in washing machines and dishwashers use proportionally more water than one full load, so wait before switching on the machine.

l Put mulch (bark chippings, gravel or grass cuttings) around plants to insulate the soil and reduce evaporation.

l Be creative in the garden some plants like dry weather conditions.

9:19am Thursday 1st June 2006

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