Our friends at Kendall-Jackson have been enjoying Practically Green, which is fabulous! We hope to be field-tripping to one or all 14 of their sustainably oriented wineries ASAP, and until then we watch their CEO on Undercover Boss and savor this California vista with a nice glass of KJ cabernet sauvignon:
Robert Boller is the VP of Sustainability, and we thought you’d like this excerpt from his Earth Day blog post:
We’ve been learning a lot about water conservation and it’s paying off for the environment and our bottom line. We’ve got some tips on saving water and money from our friends at Practically Green. Their website lets you determine your environmental performance and figure out ways to increase your green score while using social media to make it fun.
Turn off the faucet while you brush your teeth
Difficulty: Anyone can do it!
A standard faucet can use about 2 to 3 gallons of water per minute. So, turn the water off until you need to rinse and save 20 to 30 gallons of water per person per week. For a family of four that’s over 6,000 gallons of water each year. That is considerable savings—both for water and your wallet. At least 36 states are expecting water shortages in the next five years. So even if you live in a place where it rains a lot, there might be a water shortage.
Install a low-flow faucet
Difficulty: A little D.I.Y.
Low-flow faucets work by mixing air with the water coming out of the faucet, reducing water use by almost 50% without compromising pressure. Having low-flow faucets can translate into big savings—thousands of gallons of water and dollars each year.
You may already have low-flow aerators installed. Check the tip of your faucets to see if there are flow rates imprinted on the sides. If you don’t see any numbers, peek inside to see if your faucets have threading. If yes, you’ll be able to easily install aerators. If no, you might want to replace the faucet or faucets entirely.
To install or replace an aerator, you need to know the size. Either bring your old one to a hardware store or look it up online on your faucet manufacturer’s website. For maximum water savings, you want aerators rated at 2.75 gallons per minute (GPM) or below. Installation can be done by hand or with pliers, plus some pipe tape. When in doubt, seek help from a professional plumber.
Difficulty: Might need a professional, but it’s worth it!
A family of four can consume 400 gallons of water per day, 30 percent of which is flushed down the toilet. By installing a dual-flush toilet, you can choose how much water is used per flush, depending on whether you’re disposing solid or liquid waste. Like a standard toilet, a solid flush uses 1.6 gallons; but a liquid flush only uses 0.8 gallons, so the majority of flushes use 50% less water.
DIY dual-flush adapter kits are great for upgrading an existing toilet, instead of purchasing a new one, but make sure it’s compatible with your existing toilet. Different brands will have different installation instructions, but all involve adding the kit to the inside of your tank.
Consult a plumber for help selecting and installing a new dual-flush toilet and make sure you choose one that works with your existing toilet plumbing and space.
About Robert: Raised in a suburb of New York City, Robert’s family embraced the European tradition of introducing wine with water at an early age. He went to school in London and at Syracuse University where he ran a liquor store and passed the time by reading the store’s wine books. In 1989 he was a commercial photographer in NYC when he came to California on vacation — he was hooked. He got into the wine business and has spent the last 20 years in a broad spectrum of positions split evenly between operations, marketing and sales. The last eight years at Kendall-Jackson include roles as vice president of marketing, production and now sustainability.