New data shows Californians are tapering off water use in the face of severe drought, though cities and towns in the northern part of the state are cutting back more than those in the thirsty south. country and more populous.
Water use in cities and towns across the state fell 7.6% in June compared with the same month in 2020 – significantly below Governor Gavin Newsom’s voluntary 15% goal last year, but a significant change from the previous month, according to data released by the State Water Resources Control Board. In May, statewide savings were just 3.1%.
Water officials called the cuts “remarkable.”
The June numbers are the first indication of how the state’s conservation efforts are progressing since Southern California’s Metropolitan Water District declared a water emergency in April and imposed it. historic watering restrictions next month.
Residents of the Southern Coast Hydrographic Region cut their water use by 5.9% compared to the same month in 2020 – more than double the region’s May savings of 2.2%. The area includes Los Angeles and San Diego and accounts for more than half of the state’s population.
However, the most water-efficient hydrological area in the state is the San Francisco Bay Area, which cut municipal water use 12.6% in June. Followed by the Bay Area is the North Coast Hydrological Region, cutting usage by 10.3%
Driven by climate change and high temperatures, the drought has placed most of the state’s reservoirs below historical averages.
On June 1, MWD imposed outdoor watering restrictions for areas of Los Angeles, Ventura and San Bernardino counties that depend on supplies from the State Water Project – a network of reservoirs. and a canal that carries water from Northern California to the South.
The agency has never ordered such widespread restrictions before, and officials warn that more restrictions could be imposed if people do not significantly cut back on usage.
The measures are tough but necessary to ensure the health and safety of Californians, MWD officials said.
Statewide, most reservoirs are below historical averages. Lake Shasta now covers 1.7 million acres, or about 54% of the historical average storage capacity. Lake Oroville is only 62% of its historic average of 1.5 million acres.
https://www.latimes.com/environment/story/2022-08-02/norcal-tops-socal-in-water-conservation-as-savings-improve NorCal tops SoCal in water conservation as savings improve