Water conservation refers to reducing the usage of water and recycling of waste water for different purposes such as cleaning, manufacturing, and agricultural irrigation.
Water conservation can be defined as:
Any beneficial reduction in water loss, use or waste as well as the preservation of water quality;
A reduction in water use accomplished by implementation of water conservation or water efficiency measures; or,
Improved water management practices that reduce or enhance the beneficial use of water. A water conservation measure is an action, behavioral change, device, technology, or improved design or process implemented to reduce water loss, waste, or use. Water efficiency is a tool of water conservation. That results in more efficient water use and thus reduces water demand. The value and cost-effectiveness of a water efficiency measure must be evaluated in relation to its effects on the use and cost of other natural resources (e.g. energy or chemicals).
The goals of water conservation efforts include items like:
Sustainability. To ensure availability for future generations, the withdrawal of fresh water from an ecosystem should not exceed its natural replacement rate.
Energy conservation. Water pumping, delivery, and wastewater treatment facilities consume a significant amount of energy. In some regions of the world over 15% of total electricity consumption is devoted to water management.
Habitat conservation. Minimizing human water use helps to preserve fresh water habitats for local wildlife and migrating waterflow, as well as reducing the need to build new dams and other water diversion infrastructure.