To help curb rampant electricity and water wastage in Qatar, the government’s national conservation program has produced several short videos reminding people of the country’s difficult past.
The videos, produced by national conservation program Tarsheed, take residents back several decades, to a time when Qatar was a poor, parched desert nation.
In one, it shows a man riding a camel acting quickly to stop his water pouch from dripping water.
The voiceover at the end of the short scene asserts:
“A drop of water was once a matter of life or death for us. Although we have more water today, it doesn’t hold any less value. Let’s save water for now and future generations to come.”
In another brief video posted on Facebook this month, children from the past are seen enjoying a wind tunnel-like breeze.
A similar message about the value of electricity and the importance of conservation for society and its children is shared.
Qatar has set ambitious targets to cut energy and water usage in the coming years, but the rapidly growing population and government subsidies of the utilities have reaching those goals difficult.
Last fall, the Qatar General Electricity and Water Company (Kahramaa) said it saw a 12 percent rise in demand for power over the past year, which it called a “great and unexpected increase.”
Meanwhile, Qatar continues to be one of the world’s biggest consumers of water – four times as much per capita as many European countries and 10 times more than many others.
Because Kahramaa is unable to increase prices to motivate people to flick off the light switch or the tap, it has relied on appealing to residents’ social consciences through public awareness campaigns run by Tarsheed.
The latest campaign also stresses the importance of conservation from a religious perspective:
Do not waste water, even if you perform your ablution on the banks of an abundantly-flowing river. (Prophet Muhammed) pic.twitter.com/6MTw6itgwd
— ترشيد قطر (@TarsheedQatar) July 24, 2015
How to help
For those looking to curb their own energy and water consumption, Tarsheed offers several tips, including:
- Steaming vegetables instead of boiling them, as steaming only takes a few inches of water instead of a whole pot;
- Buying LED bulbs, which use 80 percent less energy than tungsten bulbs and last longer;
- Taking energy use into account when choosing equipment – for example, portable computers use less energy than desktop models; and
- Turning off electronics at the end of each workday. Idle modes on equipment will still consume #energy when they’re not in use.
What advice would you add? Thoughts?