The Tri-Valley's water providers have launched a joint initiative to urge residents throughout the entire region to reduce water consumption by 10%.
The valley's water wholesaler Zone 7 Water Agency, along with California Water Service (Cal Water), the cities of Livermore and Pleasanton, and Dublin San Ramon Services District (DSRSD), are making the request after Gov. Gavin Newsom included Alameda County in his emergency drought declaration earlier this month.
“The Tri-Valley has multiple sources of water supply storage, including its local groundwater supplies. This allows us to withstand the occasional dry winter,” said Zone 7 general manager Valerie Pryor in a statement. “However, after two especially dry years in a row, we cannot rely on storage alone. Since we do not know how long these dry conditions will last, we need to start saving water now so our community will have more water available next year,” she added.
Water agency officials said the average homeowner uses 60-70% of their water on outdoor landscaping and, therefore, they recommend decreasing water consumption by minimizing outdoor irrigation and only watering between 6 p.m. and 9 a.m. to reduce evaporation. For those who do not have outdoor landscaping, officials suggest only using washing machines and dishwashers for full loads.
The agencies also advise repairing water leaks as soon as possible. One tip they offer for checking toilet leaks is to put a few drops of food coloring in the tank located behind the seat and wait 15-20 minutes. If the color appears in the toilet, it's a sign of a leak and it could mean that it's time to replace the flapper.
“Water conservation is a mindset in California. As we prepare to enter the summer months, we are simply asking water customers to be mindful regarding their indoor and outdoor water usage," said Pleasanton city manager Nelson Fialho. "The more we do now from a voluntary perspective, the more that the state and region can stretch available supplies into the fall and winter months. Our local water customers have led the way in the past, and I’m confident they’ll do the same again by practicing good voluntary conservation techniques,” he added.
Additional advice for ways to conserve water is available at each of the water providers' websites.
Zone 7 Water Agency: zone7water.com/waterwise
Cal Water: calwater.com/conservation
City of Livermore: cityoflivermore.net/savewater
City of Pleasanton: pleasantonwaterconservation.com