California has a long tradition of conflict over water conservation. But after fifteen years of battle with the drought across the region, it can no longer be a conflict but a crisis. Governor Brown has declared a statewide drought emergency and is asking all Californians to reduce their water use by 20 percent. California is experiencing a serious drought, and the state will be challenged to meet its water needs for the upcoming year.
Below are some tips compiled by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to conserve water at home and on campus. The CPUC is committed to supporting and encourages both water and energy conservation throughout the state of California. By working together, we can save water and energy to preserve the California environment.
- Install water-saving devices. You can save water by installing low-flow showerheads, high- efficiency toilets, and kitchen/bathroom faucet aerators. Check with your utility – you may be able to get these devices at a discount, or for free. Did you know that almost 20 percent of electricity and more than 30 percent of natural gas is used to treat, transport, and use water? It’s a win-win situation – when you save water, you save energy too! (CPUC, 2015)
- Take shorter showers. Reduce your shower by 1-2 minutes and save 5 gallons (CPUC, 2015).
- Turn the water off while brushing your teeth. Save 3 gallons (CPUC, 2015).
- Fix leaky faucets. Save up to 20 gallons per day (CPUC, 2015).
- Wash a full load of laundry. Save 15 to 50 gallons per load (CPUC, 2015).
- Use a broom instead of a hose. You can save as much as 100 gallons of water cleaning your driveway by sweeping instead of using the hose. Plus, it’s good exercise (CPUC, 2015).
- Water before 8 a.m. You can save about 25 gallons each time you water by watering before 8 a.m. Watering early in the morning reduces evaporation and puts that water to work helping your plants grow (CPUC, 2015).
- Make the switch from lawn to xeriscaping (low-water use landscaping). Change your garden from turf to drought-tolerant plants and reduce your household water use by more than 30 percent. Outdoor water use accounts for between 50 to 70 percent of all household water use (CPUC, 2015).
Let’s be more conscious of water conservation and get the word out fellow Trojans! Fight on and turn it off!
CPUC (2015). Water Conservation Tips. California Public Utilities Commission. Retrieved from http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/waterrights/water_issues/water_conservation_tips.pdf