Now that you hopefully have your Mobile Water Purification System (MOWAPS) taken care of, you can begin analyzing your consumption of drinking water and make a plan to build up your Short-Term & Long-Term Water Storage (Tuesday's & Wednesday's post).
The basics of your Consumption Contingency Plan (CCP) for drinking water consumption can also apply to your use of water for general purposes, only it will require a greater quantity of water. We will only discuss drinking water consumption here.
The basic rule-of-thumb is that an individual should have 1/2 gallon (64 ounces) of water on hand for drinking each day. Obviously, children will receive less and newborns are not given water unless they are being given formula which has water content mixed into it. My recommendation calls for a minimal amount of 1 gallon of water per person per day. Altitude/climate/individual activity level will alter this amount and will not be discussed in this post. Please also remember to make provisions for individuals whose specific medical conditions might require added amounts of water on-hand.
Given that water is bulky (volume + weight), the importance of developing a CCP is crucial for three reasons:
- It clearly defines your demand for water with and without an unanticipated/undesired event occurring.
- It positions you to take better control of your water preparations at the pace which you determine.
- It prepares the logistical framework for storage locations and quantities. This reduces your vulnerability and dependence upon another for your personal/family water supply.
There are always at least two ways to do work:
- An efficient way
- A less efficient way
Here is probably the most efficient way to develop your CCP:
- Make provisions for 1 gallon of water/per person/per day for each person you are considering within your CCP-example: 5 people = 5 gallons/day (Total Daily Provision= 5 gallons)
- Begin with a calculated goal of 14 days for your initial CCP. To set a unique calculated goal, simply choose the number of days you prefer. I chose 14 days as a foundation because EVERYONE can start there as a minimum.
- Now multiply your Total Daily Provision (daily gallons) by your Calculated goal (Days) to arrive at your CCP. Ex. (5 gallons) x (14 days) = 70 gallons
- “There's only two of us at our residence and we'd like to have enough drinking water for at least 90 days.” Provisions based on 1 gallon per person/day and for at least 90 days will look like this:
(2 gallons) x (90 days) = 180 gallons
- “We have 2 adults and 2 small children in our home. How much should we store for to last us 60 days?” Provisions based on 1 gallon per person/day and for at least 45 days will look like this:
(4 gallons) x (60 days) = 240 gallons
- “I'm single and I just want to store 30 days worth of drinking water.” Provisions based on 1 gallon per person/day and for at least 30 days will look like this:
(1 gallons) x (30 days) = 30 gallons
In each of the above examples, I used the amount of 1 gallon per person/day for two reasons: (1) A healthy adult generally needs only 1/2 gallon of drinking water per day in order to to maintain appropriate hydration levels-the extra half-gallon/day serves as a buffer for minimal teeth/face washing and/or in case water is spilled, or minimal food preps, and (2) the added stress of having to ration to bare minimums of 1/2 gallon per person/day during an emergent event is absolutely unnecessary and avoidable. Less stress is best. Plus, it can also be leveraged for bartering. More on Short/Long-Term Storage on Tuesday's & Wednesday's Post.
Here is the least-efficient way to calculate your water consumption, assuming you actually maintain adequate daily hydration levels:
- Have a pen/pencil and a notepad with you and have those who reside at the same location do the same if they are capable. For children and those unable to do it themselves, you'll double your calculations to cover them.
- Take note and measure the amounts of water you drink throughout a 24-hour period of your regular activity levels, have the others do the same. Then combine amounts and follow the steps for multiplying that daily amount times the calculated goal to arrive at the CCP.
Please share feedback, ideas, insight, & other comments.
-The Berkey Guy