Or Just Bring a Friend!
By Linda Stern | NEWSWEEK
Jun 2, 2008 Issue
We do love our leisurely showers. But some entrepreneurs aim to cut water consumption while saving the experience. Enter the Quench from Australia's HydroCo. Its first cycle is a normal shower for sudsing, shampooing and rinsing that lasts two minutes. Then it starts recycling the hot, suds-free water, saving about 30 gallons for a seven-minute shower. With U.S. water averaging under $2 per 1,000 gallons, it will still take time to cover the price tag, which tops $4,000.
Other devices aren't so kind. The Eco-Drop Shower, from Italy's Tommaso Colia, consists of floor mats with concentric circles that look like ripples in a rain puddle. The circles pulsate to become uncomfortable for a person showering too long. Another prototype, from a Belgian design student, is a see-through bathtub marked like a measuring cup; the levels tell you how much drinking water you're wasting. A full tub equals 100 bottles. The question is whether the guilt defeats the stress reducing benefits of bathing in the first place.