To help Californians save more water this summer, the State Water Resources Control Board, the California Department of Technology and Save Our Water announced the launch of SaveWater.CA.Gov (no www. in front). The new mobile-optimized website will allow residents to report suspected leaks and water waste anywhere in the state from their smartphones, tablets or computers.
“Everyone needs to save water, and this is one effective way alert residents can help everyone — and every community — save water during this historic drought,” said SWRCB Chair Felicia Marcus in the press release. “Every drop saved — and every suspected leak or water waste reported and corrected — will help stretch the state’s limited water supply, because we don’t know if next year will be a fifth year of drought.”
Many local water agencies have their own methods for reporting water waste, whether by email, phone or online app. SaveWater.CA.Gov is a tool for Californians to help their communities and state save water and assist those water suppliers who may not have the resources to build their own online reporting system.
The site is available statewide and complements local efforts by providing an easy-to-use tool that directly reports water waste to the proper authority, anywhere in California. Through SaveWater.CA.Gov, users may report and send pictures of leaks or water waste. Users can select the type of water waste from a list of common problems, type in the address where the potential waste is occurring and click send.
Anonymous reports are transmitted directly to the water agency serving the geographic area where the report is made. Users don’t need to know the name of the local water agency. The SaveWater.CA.Gov site does it for them.
Marcus said, “Since the State Water Board passed emergency water conservations regulations in July 2014, hundreds of state residents have emailed us and called asking what they can do to report suspected water waste.”
SaveWater.CA.Gov is the product of a partnership between the SWRCB and the Department of Technology’s Office of the State Geographic Information Officer.
Reporting water waste is only one of the many ways residents can save water. To learn more easy ways to conserve, visit Save Our Water.
Besides offering opportunities to report water waste, the state took other actions last week. On Aug. 12, the California Energy Commission approved new standards for showerheads, expected to save more than 2.4 billion gallons of water in the first year and 38 billion gallons after full stock turnover in 10 years.
The current California showerhead standard is 2.5 gallons per minute. CalGreen code, the California Plumbing Code and the voluntary WaterSense specification are all 2.0 gpm.
The standards adopted Aug. 12 require that all showerheads not exceed 2.0 gpm maximum flow rate. This applies to fixed and handheld showerheads, as well as horizontal body sprayers manufactured on or after July 1, 2016.
To increase water savings over time, the standard for showerheads will change to 1.8 gpm maximum flow rate starting July 1, 2018, making this the most stringent standard in the country.
In April, the Energy Commission adopted a standard of 1.2 gpm flow rate for residential lavatory faucets, among other water appliances, that would have taken effect Jan. 1, 2016. Commissioners voted to change the current standard of 2.2 gpm flow rate to 1.5, effective Sept. 1.
The Energy Commission also voted to implement the 1.2 gpm flow rate on July 1, 2016. The changes are in response to manufacturers who said they would not be able to supply retailers with enough 1.2 gpm lavatory faucets on Jan. 1, but have 1.5 gpm models available today.