Check out some number crunching....some are quite frightening when you come to think about it!

WATER

- Average domestic water consumption in the UK = 157 litres per day - but if you include the amount of embedded water within products our water consumption is a shocking 3400 litres every day!

- Average daily cost per household = 81 pence per day

- The roof on an average 4-bed family home captures more than 100,000 litres of rainwater each year

- A typical family uses 70,000 litres of water each year on toilet flushing, clothes washing and outside use

- One third of all water used in the home gets flushed down the toilet

- Rainharvesting can replace up to 50% of a household mains water consumption, and up to 85% on commercial installations

- Collecting rain from your roof reduces surface water by approximately 60% per plot

- Rainwater harvesting in Germany is over 100 times the current use in the UK

- Rainwater harvesting in the UK has increased by approximately 300% in the last two years

- The payback period can be as quick as 3 years on buildings with large roofs and a high non-potable water demand

Look at the water footprint of these products in litres;

Hamburger ...........................................2,400
Cotton t-shirt ........................................2,000
Bag of potato chips............................... 185
Cup of coffee ..........................................140
Slice of bread............................................90
Glass of beer............................................ 75
A microchip ..............................................32

- If all the world's drinking water were put in one cubical tank, the tank would measure only 95 miles on each side.

- People currently lacking access to clean drinking water: 1.2 billion.

- % of world's households that must fetch water outside their homes: 67

- % increase in the world's population by mid 21st century: 100

- % increase in the world's drinking water supplies by mid 21st century: 0

- Amount of water Americans use every day: 340 billion gallons.

- Number of gallons of water needed to produce a car: 100,000

- Amount of water annually required by a nuclear reactor: 1.9 cubic miles.

Amount of water used by nuclear reactors every year: the equivalent of one and a third Lake Eries .

Source: waterwise.org.uk, envireau.co.uk, new internationalist magazine, Der Spiegel, May 25, 1992 ; and Annals of Earth, Vol. 8, Number 2, 1990; Ocean Arks International

PAPER

- One billion Christmas cards usually end up in bins across the UK . One tree is needed to make about 3,000 cards - source: The Recycling Consortium

- We will use about 8 million Christmas trees, most of which will be thrown away in January, generating over 12,000 tonnes of rubbish - source: The Recycling Consortium

- Councils plough an estimated 78,000 tons of junk mail into landfill every year - source: Guardian 09/12/06

- Recycled paper produces 73% less air pollution than if it was made from raw materials.

12.5 million tonnes of paper and cardboard are used annually in the UK.

The average person in the UK gets through 38kg of newspapers per year.

It takes 24 trees to make 1 ton of newspaper. Source: www.recycling-guide.org.uk


PACKAGING

- Around 125,000 tonnes of plastic packaging will be thrown away over Christmas - that's the equivalent weight of more than 50,000 polar bears! - source: The Recycling Consortium

- Packaging waste makes up around one quarter of everything we put in our bin, and most of this could also be recycled.

- On average, 16% of the money you spend on a product pays for the packaging, which ultimately ends up as rubbish. - source: www.recycling-guide.org.uk


WASTE & RECYCLING

- Each UK household produces over 1 tonne of rubbish annually, amounting to about 31 million tonnes for the UK each year - source: Waste Watch

- Every year, the average dustbin contains enough unrealised energy for 500 baths, 3500 showers or 5,000 hours of television - source: assurre.org

- 1 recycled tin can would save enough energy to power a television for 3 hours.

- 1 recycled glass bottle would save enough energy to power a computer for 25 minutes.

- 1 recycled plastic bottle would save enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for 3 hours.

- 70% less energy is required to recycle paper compared with making it from raw materials.

- Up to 60% of the rubbish that ends up in the dustbin could be recycled.

- As much as 50% of waste in the average dustbin could be composted.

- 9 out of 10 people would recycle more if it were made easier.

- If all cans in the UK were recycled, we would need 14 million fewer dustbins.

- £36,000,000 worth of aluminium is thrown away each year.

- Each UK family uses an average of 500 glass bottles and jars annually. Source: www.recycling-guide.org.uk

- 275,000 tonnes of plastic are used each year in the UK, that's about 15 million bottles per day.

- Most families throw away about 40kg of plastic per year, which could otherwise be recycled.

- The use of plastic in Western Europe is growing about 4% each year.

- Plastic can take up to 500 years to decompose.


POLLUTION & DISEASE

- Since the 1950s, more than 750 million tons of toxic chemical wastes have been dumped into the environment.

- By the end of the 1980s, production of humanmade synthetic organic chemicals linked to cancer had exceeded 200 billion pounds per year, a hundred-fold increase in only two generations.

- By 1992, in the U.S. alone, over 435 billion pounds of carbon-based synthetic chemicals were being produced.

- In 1994, well over a million tons of toxic chemicals were released into the environment. Of these, 177 million pounds were known or suspected carcinogens.

- There are now about 75,000 chemicals in commercial use, and 3,750 to 7,500 are estimated to be cancer-causing to humans.

- 40% of Americans can expect to contract cancer in their lifetimes.

- 80% of all cancer is attributed to environmental influences.

- Breast cancer rates are thirty times higher in the United States than in parts of Africa .

- Childhood cancers have risen by one third since 1950 and now one in every four hundred Americans can expect to develop cancer before the age of fifteen.

- The U.S. EPA projects that tens of thousands of additional fatal skin cancers will result from the ozone depletion that has already occurred over North America.

- Male fish are being found with female egg sacs, male alligators with shriveled penises, and human male sperm counts are plummeting.

- The average person can now expect to find at least 250 chemical contaminants in his or her body fat.

- Fifty new diseases have emerged since 1950, including Ebola, Lyme's Disease, Hantavirus, and HIV.

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