Californians' Water Use Reflects Shift to Permanent Changes
SACRAMENTO –Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) Executive Director Timothy Quinn issued the following statement today on Californians’ ongoing water conservation efforts under the state’s modified emergency conservation regulation.
“Wherever you go in this state, there are signs that Californians are making permanent changes to the way they use water indoors and outdoors. Lawns are being replaced with water-wise landscapes, and toilets and fixtures are being changed out for more efficient models. These changes – aided in part by hundreds of millions of dollars in rebates and incentives from local water agencies – are translating into permanent, sustainable water savings.
“The latest data from the State Water Resources Control Board shows that Californians continue to step up and use water wisely. We are glad the State Water Board is recognizing this commitment to ongoing efficiency, and we hope the policy discussion can now move beyond comparing how Californians are performing each month compared to 2015, when state-mandated targets were in effect due to an unprecedented emergency. Those comparisons are much less meaningful than the actual shift we are seeing to permanent, efficient practices that can be sustained over time.
“Californians are not taking their eyes off the ball. They are doing less of the onerous and drastic measures required last year – such as letting lawns go completely brown, putting buckets in the shower, refraining from flushing and basically not using water. Those actions are not sustainable, and they are not warranted now.
“We applaud Californians for doing what we’ve asked: making changes for the long haul. That’s exactly what we need to raise the bar on long-term efficiency and prepare our communities for the inevitable droughts to come. We need to move forward with long-term water-use efficiency that makes sense for Californians.”
ACWA is a statewide association of public agencies whose 430+ members are responsible for about 90% of the water delivered in California. For more information, visit www.acwa.com. ACWA also manages Save Our Water—the state’s official water conservation outreach program – in partnership with the California Department of Water Resources. More information is at www.saveourwater.com.