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Water Agencies Preparing For Mandatory Restrictions

Thangaraj Kumaravel, flickr

Thangaraj Kumaravel, flickr

Governor Jerry Brown has mandated California reduce its water use by 25 percent. And the state water board says it will give water agencies conservation targets based on how well they’ve saved water so far.

David Bolland is with the Association of California Water Agencies. He says many agencies already have restrictions in place. But he says customers may see changes in the coming months. For instance, water pricing may be adjusted.

"Now with this new executive order, the governor’s office has asked the State Water Resources Control Board to develop some direction to the water agencies to look at their pricing structures to make sure there’s a conservation element in their rate structures," he says.

Bolland says residential water use has been a focus. But users in commercial, industrial and institutional areas, known as the CII sector, will start getting more attention.

"There will be now some requirements for the CII sector coming down through the executive order," he says. "And so water agencies will be looking for opportunities to ask that sector to step up as well and do a lot more conservation, possibly aligning it with the 25 percent request."

Bolland says individual water conservation makes a big difference too. He says people should cut back their use of landscape irrigation systems, shorten their showers and update older toilets.  

The Association of California Water Agencies have put together a map to illustrate the various ways water agencies around the state are addressing the drought:

Drought status data is provided by Association of California Water Agencies   
  Mandatory Restrictions
  Voluntary Measures
  Agricultural Reductions
  Other actions
  Drought Emergency / Water Shortage Declared