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Take These Steps to Help End California’s Drought

Early in January, California Governor Jerry Brown declared that the state is facing a drought. According to the Drought Monitor, about 67 percent of the state is in an extreme drought with 9 percent categorized as in exceptional drought. Despite the recent rain storms, there is still significant precipitation needed to catch up to normal water levels.

Just how severe is the current situation? It’s severe enough for the State Water Project to reduce the allocation of its water to zero; a first in its 54-year history. 25 million residents and 750,000 acres of farmland that receive water from The State Water Project will have to rely on other sources, including other reservoirs.

As residents of the Golden State, it is our responsibility to be mindful and help conserve our water resources. Here are some key ways to help save as much water as possible.

  1. Recognize the problem and spread the word – Being aware of the drought is the first step in conserving water. Spreading the word about the issue is the second step. Using social media such as Twitter to pass on the news will spread the information faster than any other medium. The hashtag #CaliforniaDrought for example, is being used to raise awareness of the situation. The collective action of everyone as a whole is a determining factor that will impact this drought in a positive direction.
  2. Create a reminder list – Although it seems like common sense to do things like shortening your shower time or turning off the faucet between uses, having a list posted in different parts of your home and office will serve as a helpful reminder when doing these tasks. These lists should include tactics like:
    • Turning off the faucet while brushing your teeth or shaving
    • Taking shorter showers
    • Making sure your dishwasher and washing machines are completely full before running them
    • Reducing outdoor water usage for plants
    • Installing a water-efficient shower head
    • Turning off the hose in between uses while washing your car
  3. Keep checking the drought status – Applied knowledge is power. It’s important to keep updated with your city or county’s public utilities website or local news on the status of the drought. This will help gauge how much you need to save daily as a household in addition to other useful tactics that can be used to save water.

While it is easier to turn the other direction and let government officials solve the issue, the fact remains that the continuous collective action by citizens of this state is essential to help solve the problem. “We need to do everything we can, and we are – from groundwater use to conservation to encouraging efficiencies in new developments to encourage households to reduce their use,” said Julie Ortiz, PUC water conservation manager.

As a certified Green Business of San Francisco, it is our responsibility to practice what we preach in the preservation of natural resources. It’s important to keep the habits we learn from this situation so that we don’t have to revert back to it in the future.

For more information on water conservation and energy efficiency, sign up for our newsletter.



 

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