Virtual water is essentially the same concept as embodied energy. It looks at how much water is consumed to bring a product to a consumer.

In reading last week’s Economist Magazine I note that the calculations for a person living in a first word country as follows:

  • Vegetarian Diet – 2000 litres per day
  • Meat Diet – 5000 litres per day

When comparing this to the domestic water usage per person here in Melbourne of 155litre per person per day we see that the virtual water usage is a far more important issue than domestic usage.

Saying that, if we are motivated enough to collect shower water in a bucket to water our plants, labelling of food products with the virtual water usage would seem like a logical step for motivated and environmental conscious consumers to reduce both there direct and indirect water consumption.

Will we hear “Target 2500 litres” in the near future?

Pic: Flickr user 囧-WQ-囧

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