The San Diego County Water Authority is calling on all residents and businesses to turn off irrigation systems immediately to help conserve water during and after rainfall that is forecast for the San Diego region Tuesday afternoon and evening.
The region’s water supplies have been impacted by drought conditions around California over the last two years and 2009 will likely be another dry year. Reservoir levels throughout the state are low, and the snowpack levels in the Sierra Nevada are still about 20 percent below normal for this time of year. In addition, regulatory restrictions to protect threatened fish species have further cut water deliveries from Northern California.
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, the San Diego region’s largest water supplier, will decide whether to allocate or cutback water deliveries to its member agencies on April 14. Water Authority officials estimate MWD could order an allocation that cuts back deliveries by 10 percent to 15 percent.
The Water Authority estimates a region-wide voluntary one-week hiatus from using landscape watering systems during and after a rainstorm could save 2,000 acre-feet of water. An acre-foot is enough water to meet the needs of two families of four for a year. Water saved now will keep more water in storage to help meet future needs.
To determine when it is necessary to turn water systems back on, the Water Authority recommends monitoring soil moisture by sticking a shovel or your finger into the dirt. When the soil is dry one to two inches deep, it is time to water again.
Other water conservation tips and resources are available at: www.20gallonchallenge.com.
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