The San Diego County Water Authority is calling on all residents and businesses to immediately shut off irrigations systems to conserve water. Rain is forecast for the San Diego region beginning as early as late tonight, continuing periodically into next week. Irrigation systems can remain off for a minimum of a week to 10 days after a rainfall and longer if significant precipitation occurs.
The region’s water supplies have been impacted by extremely dry conditions around California over the last two years, as well as by extensive drought conditions in the Colorado River basin. In addition, regulatory restrictions on pumping from the State Water Project have significantly cut water deliveries from Northern California and are expected to continue through 2009.
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. The Water Authority estimates a voluntary one-week hiatus from using landscape watering systems across the region 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.
Other water conservation tips, incentives and programs are available at: www.20gallonchallenge.com.
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