Imagine waking up to a day without water. No showers or flush toilets. No laundry or clean hands. No sanitation or healthcare. No drinking water. It might seem almost unthinkable, but this situation is a sobering reality that millions around the globe face permanently.

According to the United Nations, around 700 million people in 43 countries suffered from water scarcity in 2014. By 2025, that number could rise to 1.8 billion. Unless we act urgently, this scenario could become a reality for millions more in coming decades.

What would a day without water mean for you?

Founded by the US Water Alliance, “Imagine a Day Without Water” is a national education campaign that brings together thousands of individuals, companies, and organizations to highlight how water is essential, invaluable, and in need of infrastructure and conservation investment. On October 21, 2021, the campaign will educate people across the United States through events, resolutions, student contests, social media engagement, and more. To promote the value of water in our lives, “Imagine a Day Without Water” wants to help everyone learn about where their water comes from and where it goes.


Mitel and its employees are taking action to conserve water

Mitel takes its role in water conservation and environmental efforts across its facilities in North America very seriously. We’re engaged in efforts both big and small in our workplaces and in our communities.

“We’ve been fitting our faucets with water-saving, touchless sensors, and we keep transitioning our toilet fixtures to the same system as the need arises,” says Dan Watters, Mitel’s Facilities Manager.

“COVID has initiated different things that would result in reduced water usage. Remote working can help limit our water footprint, and it also helps conserve electricity and reduce carbon emissions,” he says.

From a big-picture perspective, Mitel is aligning our priorities for our current and future facilities to focus strongly on conservation and sustainability at all our worksites.

We are prioritizing the use of water-saving fixtures in all replacement and repair work, and we are working directly with facilities teams and building management to utilize low-consumption, sustainable equipment across all sites wherever Mitel does business.

Although the pandemic has produced a sharp drop in water consumption, Dan believes that once employees go back to the office, these low consumption levels will be difficult to maintain.

“Currently, only essential workers are present in our offices. Even in facilities that are one-hundred percent open, like Austin, Sunnyvale, and Rochester, only five percent of the staff are in the office. We have maintained the same low water-usage levels from 2020 into 2021. These numbers won’t reflect reality once people are back. We’ll see increased water use in the future, so we must continue implementing conservation measures in our facilities to encourage and maintain a low consumption.”

Looking ahead to an increased employee presence in the office, Dan has overseen other sustainability efforts at Mitel’s facilities that are meant to encourage people to become environmentally conscious. These measures will help returning employees save water and reduce their environmental impact in general.

“We strongly advocate for refillable water bottles – our facilities have stations where employees can easily refill their bottles. Additionally, we have different policies at Mitel that reduce our environmental footprint, such as 100% paper shred, e-waste recycling programs, touchless LED light fixtures, and cardboard recycling.”

In some locations, such as the Kanata, Canada or Maricopa, Arizona facilities, Mitel has taken additional steps to further reduce employees’ environmental footprint.

“In Kanata, we have a good recycling program,” Dan says. “None of our e-waste goes to landfills, we recycle our batteries, and we compost our office food waste. In Maricopa, we participate in a drip reduction program.” Individual behaviors are difficult to control, however. So Mitel also promotes sustainable actions and education among its employees that aim to expand environmental efforts at the office and at home.“We encourage folks to adopt sustainable practices at home – like planting drought-resistant plants and plants that are good for pollinators and native wildlife. Internally, we take part in ISO audits to discuss and implement the best practices for sustainability in our facilities,” Dan says.

Practical Steps to Save Water

Whether at home or at the office, education is key to water conservation. You, too, can make a difference by following these steps:


At Home:

1. Check your toilet for leaks

Does your toilet make seemingly random refilling noises? Chances are the seal in the tank has a leak, causing the tank to continuously refill to replenish the lost water. A leaky toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water per day.* *National Water Commission, 2021

2. Limit unnecessary flushes

Do you blow your nose and toss the tissue in the toilet? Do you find dryer lint on the floor and flush it down? Be mindful of unnecessary toilet flushes – each one wastes five to seven gallons of water!

3. Install water-saving shower heads, faucets, and filters

Your hardware or plumbing supply store stocks inexpensive shower heads or flow restrictors that will cut your shower flow to about three gallons a minute instead of five to ten. They are easy to install and won’t change the quality of your shower.

4. Turn off the water when you’re brushing your teeth or shaving

Turning off the faucet in between rinses of your toothbrush or razor will help save four gallons of clean water going to waste.


At the Office:

1. Help monitor your company’s water consumption

Keeping yourself informed on where your office uses water and how much it uses can help you to identify areas of potential savings. You can also help save this precious resource by quickly reporting leaks or waste.

2. Encourage your company to perform regular maintenance checks

As is the case with energy efficiency, old or unmaintained equipment can mean increased water usage. Talk to your facilities maintenance specialists about the importance of preventative maintenance and water-saving equipment.

3. Propose alternative landscaping and fixture ideas

Rain gardens are becoming practical not just for home use, but also for businesses who want an appealing landscape that requires less watering. You can also suggest that your company use ornamental grasses and drought-resistant plants instead of grasses and delicate flowers. Some other ideas you can propose include:

A. Water-saving devices in toilet cisterns. Depending on the size of a cistern, you could save between one and three liters each time you flush the toilet.

B. Rooftop water collection butts. Water butts usually store about 200 liters of water. Rainwater is better for watering plans and reduces the amount of treated water needed for gardens.

C. Regular leak checks on internal plumbing.

D. Motion sensors on sink taps.

4. Engage and inform colleagues

Effective water conservation means taking a hard line on waste – and everyone should participate. Every member of your team needs to operate with water conscientiousness. Offer education and guidance when possible, and lead by example.


A Shared Responsibility

Individuals and organizations can make a difference by implementing water-saving initiatives at home and at the office, no matter how small the initiative. Education campaigns like “Imagine a Day Without Water” are excellent opportunities for people to reflect upon the impact that water scarcity would have on their lives. These campaigns also highlight the shared responsibility that water conservation represents for people around the world. Organizations are well-positioned to lead by example on a large scale.

“As we renew leases for our facilities, we implement more opportunities for saving water. We’re always trying to reduce our water usage and carbon footprint and expand this into other offices. People are more conscious about this than before. The environment is on top of everyone’s mind now, especially at Mitel,” says Dan.

For more information about “Imagine a Day Without Water”, visit

We all have a responsibility to respect and protect water. Make every drop count.

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