Historically, much of the southwestern United States has been struggling with dry weather. After the last major drought in California in the late 1980s and early ‘90s, California has been investing to boost its water resilience. However, in the face of growing populations, changing climate patterns and over-tapped aquifer and river systems, California must accelerate the use of water conservation strategies to alleviate the overuse of our mostly inefficient water system.
To accelerate the way to a more sustainable future, local government bodies and commercial building owners in California need to increase their investment in:
- Water Efficient Technologies: High efficiency water saving technologies such as Falcon’s Waterfree Technologies’ waterless urinals and hybrid conserve nearly 100% of water while simplifying plumbing needs and saving money.
- Recycled Water: Recycling restores gray water from sinks, washing machines, showers and hoses to a pristine condition for non potable uses—landscape irrigation and toilet flushing are among the best examples of reclaimed water applications. By reusing the same drops multiple times, we can extend our water supplies much further, ultimately helping us to replenish groundwater aquifers.
- Urban Rainwater and Stormwater: LA’s Green Alleys and SMURRF are great examples of harvesting and improving the quality of stormwater that otherwise would run off our streets, overflow our sewer systems and increase beach pollution.
- Responsible Groundwater Management: In the western United States, groundwater has been pumped at unsustainable rates. The region relies on groundwater to meet 60 percent of its water needs. Cleaning contaminated groundwater can expand the lifespan of our hidden reservoirs by sometimes recharging from surface water.
The City of Santa Monica, a leader in water conservation, is expecting to achieve water self-sufficiency by 2020. In recent years, Santa Monica has invested in major improvements of its local groundwater supplies, increasing the use of various non-potable water supply strategies and encouraging the use of water efficient plumbing fixtures through rebates.
The investment towards greener, cleaner and more reliable water solutions helps strengthen California’s drought resiliency for a more sustainable tomorrow.