California Expands Save Our Water Program to Combat the Intensified Drought

Drop Falling into Water ca. 2000
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Drop Falling into Water ca. 2000
Drop Falling into Water ca. 2000

 

By Chujun Tang

 

SACRAMENTO, CA – A briefing held by the state on April 14 with social media influencers aimed to support water conservation education statewide, as the state braces for another dry year. 

 

“Make no mistake, California and the entire West are feeling the effects of the intensifying drought – notwithstanding today’s rainfall,” said Governor Newsom during the briefing. “We’re putting to work the lessons learned during the last drought, but with our climate getting hotter and drier, it’s critical that we work together to protect our water supply. Engaging Californians from all walks of life and connecting peer to peer, we can meet this challenge head-on.”

 

The Save Our Water program has been ramped up due to the backslide of water conservation this year. Californians saved less water during the driest two-month start to the year 2022, despite Newsom’s pleas for people voluntarily cutting 15 percent of their water use. Californians used 2.6 percent more water in January 2022 than the same month in 2020. Californians only conserved about 6.5 percent of water compared to 2020, falling far short of Newsom’s 15 percent goal.

 

Water conservation reached a bottleneck when much drier weather fell on California beginning this year. February was California’s second-driest month on record. Then, the April snow survey showed that the Sierra Nevada snowpack, which provides a third of California’s water supply, declined considerably to only 25 percent of average. Less saving and worsening climate combined call for new measures of the state for conservation. 

 

While some advocates were anticipating a mandatory order from the state, it turned to communications efforts through the Save Our Water program, which is spearheaded by the refreshed online portal. The new webpage highlights the horrible consequences of intensified droughts as well as top tips for mass water conservation, with the top one to remove yard lawns. 80 percent of residential water usage happens outdoors in California. Home plants need more water to survive during summer, which is the typical dry season in the state. 

 

The education program is organized in multiple ways. Various media, like radio, newsprints, billboards, are engaged in the advertising. These educational materials are dispatched in multiple languages such as Spanish, Mandarin, Korean, and Vietnamese, to promote water conservation in diverse communities. The program focuses on the partnerships with celebrities: artists Lalo Alcarez, Isabella Ferregur, Jesus Zapien, Monica Villa, Leo Gonzalez, and Mario Lopez, who incorporate the awareness and approaches of saving water through the media; California sports teams, businesses, retailers, and other organizations to expand the reach of Save Our Water.

 

Save Our Water tries to incorporate water saving into daily routine. It cooperates with college campuses to amplify the call across generations, with local water agencies statewide through media and provides water-saving resources at farmer markets and county fairs.

 

“All Californians must focus on conserving water now. The Save Our Water campaign will help engage Californians with the information and resources they need. Saving water today means more water for tomorrow,” said Karla Nemeth, Department of Water Resources Director.

 

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About The Author

Jordan Varney received a masters from UC Davis in Psychology and a B.S. in Computer Science from Harvey Mudd. Varney is editor in chief of the Vanguard at UC Davis.

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8 thoughts on “California Expands Save Our Water Program to Combat the Intensified Drought”

  1. Chris Griffith

    Talk about self-induced pain…

    We should have been building reservoirs for the past 10 to 20 years it may not assault all our water problems but it sure as heck would have helped a little bit more than what we have now.

    Thank you liberals

     

    We should have had a good old-fashioned moratorium on building in California until the liberals got all this good stuff under control but that sure didn’t happen did it 😠

     

    But Instead the greenies and the liberals are building a high-speed train nowhere

     

    If only our illustrious governor and State legislature put as much effort in the building a water infrastructure.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    1. Bill Marshall

      Where to begin on your erroneous, inciteful, ill-informed post?

      I can’t fathom ‘where you’re coming from’, so I won’t even begin.  Waste of time and key-strokes…

    2. Alan Miller

      Sounds like a conservative talking point.

      There are only so many ‘prime’ spots to build a reservoir.  Sites is now in their ‘sites’ and it doesn’t even have a water source of any significance, it all has to be pumped uphill into the reservoir, burning significant electricity to do so, much more than will ever be produced. This is about the mass pouring of concrete.  Sites is a Teichert Special, hold the fries 😐

  2. Ron Oertel

    Thought I’d “clarify” the following quote from the article, by including the part in parentheses:

    All Californians must focus on conserving water now. The Save Our Water campaign will help engage Californians with the information and resources they need.

    Saving water today means more water for tomorrow(‘s housing developments) . . .

    1. Bill Marshall

      Saving water today means more water for tomorrow(‘s housing developments) . . .

      Do you understand that in CA, water consumption/Ac. is highest for “prime Ag.” (not housing!)?”  Goes against your view that housing is a drain on finances, right?   I wonder…

      The concept of “balance”, and/or “tradeoffs”, could lead to a rational discussion… rather than a more narrow lens.

      Think Clemens got it right, in California, “whiskey is for drinking, water is for fighting”… or something close to that…

       

       

      1. Ron Oertel

        Do you understand that in CA, water consumption/Ac. is highest for “prime Ag.” (not housing!)?”

        I’m aware of that, in totality.  Not sure that it holds true “per acre”.

        I do know that farmland can remain unplanted (and unwatered) if needed, but that’s not the case with cities.

        Goes against your view that housing is a drain on finances, right?   I wonder…

        What do finances have to do with that?

        And for that matter, doesn’t farmland contribute more (financially), than housing? Isn’t agriculture (still) one of the biggest industries in the state?

         

      2. Ron Oertel

        I’m aware of that, in totality.

        Actually, that’s not true, either for California.  Just looked it up.

        The highest water use is for “environmental management”.

        (By the way, I understand that the Native Americans used to use approximately 99% for “environmental management”.  And they had no sprawl, traffic, or greenhouse gas problems. Probably no problem with homelessness, either. And they allowed forests to “manage themselves”, though I think they sometimes used controlled burns.)  🙂

        And their monthly bills/cost of living were practically non-existent.

  3. Ron Oertel

    I do find the “farms vs. cities” argument interesting, since farms are what allow cities to exist in the first place.  As such, water for farms is actually water for cities.

    For sure, cities will “win” the water wars (vs. farms), but cities will actually lose as a result. Shuffling chairs on the Titanic, as another commenter sometimes says. (But this Titanic is “sinking” in an increasingly desert-like area.)

    There’s reasons that Bill Gates and others are buying-up farmland. There’s reasons that food prices have been, and will continue to rise.

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