Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

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By an edhat reader

Now that it is looking like we are going to have another low water year, are any of the local Water Agencies messaging the community to conserve water? I have the impression that they tend to be behind the curve regarding educating the local water consumers to achieve the desired end.

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cherplan Feb 24, 2020 04:34 PM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

We are still drinking the dinosaurer's pee. There is still the same amount of water as in the beginning.... What goes around, comes around.

a-1594439550 Feb 24, 2020 09:44 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

We just never stopped trying to conserve, seemed easier to keep the habits. 25 gallons per day is our goal. Hardest was stopping garden-line leaks. We finally returned to hand-watering, gave up on the small garden-watering lines that were constantly blowing out with changes in water pressure. Short showers make a huge difference; we collect the run-off and dump it in the garden. Flushing once every 24 hours except for #2. Not going crazy over clothes washing, not automatically putting everything in the hamper at the end of the day; washing machine set for one less rinse. Dish-washer run when full, on water-saving cycle. Yatayata.

PitMix Feb 24, 2020 10:47 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Good for you, and I'm not giving you a backhanded compliment like 9:51. Virtue is its own reward. Ignore the nattering nabobs of negativity.

PitMix Feb 24, 2020 08:58 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Cachuma currently at 71% capacity with 138,000 ac-ft. Change in the last year as -10,000 ac-ft. At that rate, we have about 10 years of water supply before we have to start freaking out about our supply.

RHS Feb 24, 2020 08:24 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

How long must we accept the mythology that the "water shortage" is caused (or even substantially contributed to) by urban household use? Less than 10% of the CA water consumption is for this purpose. And that has already been substantially reduced. But 85% of our water is used to grow crops like alfalfa and almonds and rice, most of which is shipped out of the nation. These growers (large corporations mostly) get really cheap water from pumping out the aquifer (lowering the central valley as much as 20' in places) or simply damming and sucking up mountain runoff before it can go to better uses. These growers are notoriously unwilling to use simple water saving techniques. They still practice flood irrigation, for example. If they saved 10-12% of their water a year they would equal ALL of the water used by people in houses and apartments. I am not going to feel guilty because I wash my own car, for example, while this crap is going on. And I am not going to support "solutions" like the diversion of rivers from the SF Bay or hugely expensive and environmentally damaging desalination projects for the same reasons.

a-1594439550 Feb 24, 2020 04:45 PM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

City did not "ram through" the desal project. Voters approved it in a ballot measure, mainly backed by the local real estate industry. You needed to be there. A most interesting election when voters when faced with a choice, chose both: desal and peripheral canal to hook up to state water project. Funded with their own money. Nature had the last laugh when shortly after this twofer election, the March Miracle storms filled up Cahuma any way. But there was no sunset clause on either ballot measure so both voter's wishes were fulfilled: desal and state water hook up. Elections have consequences. We were warned when we needed state water the most, it would already be over-subscribed and desal was going to be very expensive. And thus, it came to pass. Think about all of then when you get your ever increasing water bills, even after doing your part to conserve. Only to have the city (your elected representatives) "ram through" even more development, "affordable" or not. We do best as a sleepy backwater burg, for retired people.

Bene Feb 24, 2020 01:56 PM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

The "why" is because the city rammed through the desal project at great expense--even going over the projected budget by astronomical amounts of money. They have to justify this expenditure, so they will keep it going no matter what the cost to the environment and no matter how much the damage to the people living in the one area of town that gets 100 percent of that "sub-par" water. (while the more fortunate parts of town get none of the crappy water.)

RHS Feb 24, 2020 11:43 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Pittmix: Hard to get information from SB Water people. Best I can find is that the city is entitled to 3300 AF a year. This is about what the desal plant produces at best: 3125 AF. For the past several years there has been plenty of SWP water available but the city avoids taking SWP water almost certainly to make the desal plant seem needed. The cost of SWP water is less than $2000 AF. I think it is about $1400? But the cost of desal water is more like $4000. So the city is apparently buying its minimal obligation of the SWP (1151 AF I believe) and running the desal plant at about 2X the cost to meet our needs. Why?

PitMix Feb 24, 2020 10:51 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

RHS, we don't get much SWP water because in dry years there is not much to go around and in wet years we don't need it and trade it to someone else that wants it more. During the drought the supply was barely enough to meet our minimum needs. The increase in supply from the drought is strictly due to local runoff and not because the SWP sent us 138,000 ac-ft which would cost us about $276,000,000 based on $2,000/ac-ft. My bill hasn't gone up that much.

RHS Feb 24, 2020 09:47 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Pittmix: Please remember that Cachuma is basically a holding tank. It is constantly being filled and depleted not just by local rainfall but by State Water Project water that is more than adequate now to meet our needs for a long time. We need not fear the rise and fall of that facility alone.

PitMix Feb 24, 2020 08:56 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

All that you say is true, but that does not affect our local supply from Lake Cachuma, unless you think the ag industry is going to wake up and start doing their share to conserve their almost free water? They have complete support from our Prez and his minions, some of whom used to work for one of the biggest water wasters in CA- Westlands. If our choices are to conserve locally or change national politics, which do you think is more likely? City has said that we are still saving 30% over past usage so many of us did not change our habits once the drought ended. I personally am still in total drought mode and it is helping me save money on my bill.

Waterboy Feb 24, 2020 07:18 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

It makes sense for the water authority to begin imposing conservation measures now while we still have reasonable reserves. If they wait we will again be faced with the cost of pumping water up and out of Lake Cachuma and the possible need to hastily expand the filtration capacity of the desalination plant.

SantaBarbaraObserver Feb 24, 2020 08:25 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Joe, you're partially right. Our so-called "leaders" only want the tax paying property owners and no-voice renters, to conserve. The commercial operations, ( hotels, motels, restaurants, etc.) are not required to do anything different nor are there any limits, volunteer or not on their water use. So we have 2-5k guests a day flushing and bathing and lounging in lush gardens wasting our most precious resource while you worry about a $200 water bill for halving your use. Why? Because our weak political leaders (Cathy 'wet-noodle' Murillo) are addicted to the tourist industries tax revenue. They need the money so bad that they are willing to give away our water and our best resources for a few million in tax revenues. Remember that these are out of town corporate interest that own these hotels and that they continue to pay min wage, import their workforce, and undermine our quality of life, all to add a to our city's general fund to pay for our city's massive debt. This is what the worst mayor in our history promotes. More city workers, more min-wage service jobs that put a burden on our social nets and more gifts to outside interest. Isnt she great?

Luvaduck Feb 24, 2020 07:46 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Or better yet, do as the water board decades ago and refuse to put in water lines and meters. Besides having limited water, this area is surrounded by mountains and ocean and can't spread like an area located in plains. The only way to go is up and that would turn the area into the Valley.

JoeG Feb 23, 2020 09:45 PM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Exactly! California and Santa Barbara politicians urge us to conserve. Conserve! So that they can jam more development into our community. It’s a racket!

a-1594439550 Feb 23, 2020 08:13 PM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

We have done our share of building out in this town. Other cities must now catch up with us and convert 25% of their housing stock to become subsidized units like we have converted in Santa Barbara. We don't have to add another single unit. We are so done now with "affordable" housing. We already gave at the office and it has materially distorted our economy.

Yeti Feb 23, 2020 03:11 PM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

I totally agree with all of your conservation messages. AND, I really feel that this IS one of the few roles of government. Conserving our precious resources and educating/reminding the irresponsible and the non-thinkers to use less and be wise. Maybe I just expect more of our local government, water agencies and citizens. Conserve before it is an emergency!

a-1594439550 Feb 23, 2020 10:32 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Here is the latest Water Supply Management Report from the City of SB ------ https://www.santabarbaraca.gov/civicax/filebank/blobdload.aspx?BlobID=225657

a-1594439550 Feb 23, 2020 09:34 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

I'd say that we are pretty well educated in water conservation and, as Californians, should be smart enough to do this all of the time, like a habit.

pstarSR Feb 23, 2020 09:54 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

as the past few years have shown, regardless of someone saying "we are out of the drought" we are not. Continuing the practices of water conservation is no longer a "temporary" idea, I agree we should just continue no matter what.

a-1594439550 Feb 23, 2020 09:24 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Who even stopped conserving - we are never out of a drought crisis. Just do it, 25/7/365. It is who we are today. Plus most have already moved into low-water use landscaping. So what is left to further "conserve"?

Luvaduck Feb 24, 2020 07:51 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

People are still buying sod to put in now that the drought is "over", and I read somewhere that Goleta water either is or is considering selling water to Montecito for their Hawaii-lush landscaping and acres of lawn. What that means down the road is that we will be paying a drought surcharge to subsidize it. Lean on the water board folks.

Shasta Guy Feb 23, 2020 08:47 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

Yes it is a dry year, but Cachuma currently is at 71.4% capacity. We’ve got a good buffer in the reservoir, but of course I’d like to see a lot more precipitation. It’s a dry season for the entire state.

Luvaduck Feb 24, 2020 07:56 AM
Where are the Water Conservation PSA's?

If your house hasn't burned down in the increased number of big fires, would you cancel your fire insurance? Of course not. Cachuma wasn't the only source of water depleted and needs to be held in reserve as much as possible. For those who read the Bible, think Joesph's dream of 7 fat then 7 lean years. Egypt acted rationally and flourished while all, others were in such distress they had to sell off their land and go to work for Eygpt.

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