Searing 90-degree temperatures in October left many Californians craving water like never before. And, for October statewide water conservation numbers, released today, it showed.
Despite meeting the state mandate in October, as the Post reported previously, Long Beach’s water conservation numbers for October were down, and statewide numbers for that month, released today, followed suit. November water conservation numbers for Long Beach should be released this week.
The state as a whole recorded a conservation rate of 22.2 percent for the month, down from 26.4 in September and missing the Governor’s mandate of a 25 percent decrease.
However, because the conservation numbers for the summer exceeded the state mandate, the cumulative water use reduction also exceeds the Governor’s cumulative mandate for the year, meaning the state as a whole is still on track.
“We anticipated a dip in the conservation rate for October, but it is not because people are losing interest—they actually did quite well considering how unusually hot it was in October,” said Felicia Marcus, chair of the State Water Resources Control Board, in a statement. “It’s harder to keep the percentages up in the fall and winter when little outdoor watering takes place. That’s why the savings over the summer were so important.”
Cumulatively speaking, the state’s conservation rate was 27.1 percent for June through October, exceeding the state mandate by 2.1 percent, according to a release issued today by the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB)
October’s temperatures were well above average, bringing a decline in average state water use of 97 gallons per day in September to 87 gallons per day in October.
The SWRCB noted that although October 2015 had the lowest level of monthly savings since June, water suppliers saved more than three times the volume of water saved in October 2013.
Since the beginning of the state mandate, the Office of Enforcement has issued nine conservation orders, 104 information orders, 72 warning letters, four Administrative Civil Liability Complaints and seven alternative compliance orders to water suppliers.
The SWRCB left a pointed note to residents to continue conservation efforts throughout the winter, including watering just one day per week and abstaining from watering during or 48 hours after a rain event.
Given the heavy rains anticipated this winter for El Niño, maintaining the new water schedule seems especially pertinent.
“We can’t know when the drought will end, so we have to keep saving every drop we can,” Marcus said in a statement. “Predictions are just that, predictions. Having the odds in our favor, can give us hope, but not the certainty we need to relax our efforts.”