The Santa Monica City Council on Tuesday night advanced the City’s call for immediate water conservation and dedicated an additional $400,000 towards incentive and conservation programs.
Mayor Pro Tem Terry O’Day said the City needs to move quickly and go further.
“Every dollar invested today that results in lasting conservation is a dollar we’re investing in our long-term water sufficiency,” O’Day said.
In response to the statewide drought, the Council called on Santa Monica residents, visitors, businesses and their employees to take immediate action to reduce water use by 20 percent, or 2.2 million gallons of water a day.
Reducing water use will lessen the impacts of the drought on local groundwater and imported water supplies and improve local, regional and state-wide water sustainability.
The City provides, on average, 12 million gallons of water each day to 18,000 water customers, 24 hours a day, 365 days per year. In 2013 total city-wide water use was 4.2 billion gallons (11.8 million gallons per day).
In order to reduce 20 percent, water customers combined need to save 800 million gallons a year (2.2 million gallons per day) to reach an annual total of 3.4 billion gallons or a new daily total of 9.6 million gallons per day.
Santa Monica has been aggressively working to be a leader in water conservation for years.
Since 2008 when high-efficiency water fixtures hit the market, the City has provided 1,600 rebates on devices like WaterSense toilets, urinals, clothes washers, and sustainable landscaping with an estimated savings of 600 acre feet – enough water for approximately 1,800 homes for one year.
Many Santa Monica customers, approximately 42 percent of all single-family water customers and 80% of all multi-family water customers, are already significantly conserving water.
“The Council’s support and additional resources will allow us to assist more people make the simple changes in and around their homes and businesses that will not only help them stay within their allowance but also contribute towards long-term water sufficiency,” Dean Kubani, Sustainability Manager.
In order to help achieve the new mandatory 20 percent water reduction goal, the City urges residents and businesses to adopt water saving strategies, including:
1. Keep showers to five minutes or less
2. Check for and repair leaks in toilets, faucets, showers and irrigation systems
3. Replace low flow toilets with WaterSense toilets (rebates available)
4. Replace top-loading washing machines with Energy Star front-loading washing machines (rebates available)
5. Replace lawns with water-smart plants, mulch and drip irrigation (rebates available)
The following water restrictions are currently in effect in Santa Monica:
— No sprinkler irrigation 10 am to 4 pm any day of the week
— No irrigation runoff or overspray
— No hosing paved areas such as sidewalks, driveways, patios
— No washing vehicles without a hose shutoff nozzle and no runoff to the storm drains
— No fountains without recycling (recirculating) systems
— No restaurants shall serve water without a request
— No leaks are permitted from any interior or exterior plumbing fixture
Contact the City’s Code Compliance office at email@example.com or 310.458.4984 to report violations.