Resting winter lawn sprinklers helped drive water savings up

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Shutting off lawn sprinklers in the Santa Clarita Valley two months ago enabled local water retailers to conserve 40 percent of the water used in 2013.

Constant, nearly daily rain that fell on the SCV in February enabled SCV homeowners and businesses to maintain their green lawns without the help of sprinklers.

The State Water Resources Control Board announced Tuesday that urban Californians’ monthly water conservation was 25.1 percent in February, more than double the 11.9 percent savings in February 2016, when state-mandated conservation targets were in place.

The cumulative statewide savings from June 2015 through February 2017 remains at 22.5 percent, compared with the same months in 2013.

In the SCV, however, water savings rose well above the state average, according to the latest numbers supplied by SCV’s three main water retailers.


Local residents who get their water from the Santa Clarita Water Division are, according to the company’s Retail Manager Keith Abercrombie, “still doing a great job conserving water as shown by their February savings of 40.7 percent as compared to February 2013 levels.

“Their cumulative savings since June 2015 as compared to 2013 is 24.2 percent which amounts to over 4.1 Billion gallons of water saved,” he said.

Our most recent data for March, 2017 shows SCWD customers saving 20.1 percent as compared to March 2013.

Valencia Water

Similar savings were experienced by officials at the Valencia Water Company.

Ken Petersen, general manager of the Valencia Water Company, on Wednesday reported water usage in February was 46 percent below the water used during the same time in 2013.

And Valencia Water Company’s March 2017 usage was 26.6 percent below the retailer’s March 2013 use, he said.

“While the recent rains have provided much relief to our sources of water supply, both imported and local groundwater sources, VWC recognizes that our customers have taken significant action to reduce their water use during the drought and should continue to find ways to make these savings permanent,” Petersen told The Signal.

“From installing drought tolerant landscapes to taking steps to improve their irrigation efficiency, our customers have successfully responded to the call to conserve by saving more than 6.7 billion gallons of water since Jan. 2014,” he said.

Newhall Water

And at SCV’s third and oldest water retailer, the Newhall County Water District, the same savings were experienced in February.

“We were down 46 percent in February,” NCWD General Manager Steve Cole told The Signal.

“Clearly, weather played a factor in the reduced numbers in February, showing the direct link between reduced outdoor irrigation and overall water savings.”

And, just as the other two retailers reported, NCWD saw March savings of 25 percent compared to the amount of water used in 2013.


Across the state, Californians now drying out over a wet winter saved millions of gallons of water.

Since June 2015, 2.6 million acre-feet of water has been saved – enough water to supply more than 13 million people – exceeding a third of the state’s population – for a year, state officials reported Tuesday.

“Even with a banner year for winter precipitation, Californians have continued to practice sensible conservation, with a significant drop in water use in the South Coast,” said State Water Board Chair Felicia Marcus.

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