Department of Water Resources Cuts Supply in Drought


The city may face more water use restrictions as a result of a state Department of Water Resources decision to cut its allocation to localities.

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Many more details from the Daily News:

The DWR's State Water Project is one of several major suppliers of Los Angeles water. City officials said because they have other sources they aren't ready yet to announce stricter conservation measures beyond those announced in the past year, but they are monitoring the situation carefully. State and local officials said the announcement highlights the need for the public to continue making voluntary reductions in water usage.

"We have to prepare for the worst and hope we are able to see more precipitation later this year," DWR Director Lester Snow said in a conference call Tuesday.

But the news may end up being better than we think, if last year is an indication:

This is the second straight year the DWR has announced record low allocations in its preliminary estimates. Last year, however, the agency ended up providing 40 percent of the requests, rather than the 15 percent it had predicted at a similar early stage.

The story has a lot to say about where L.A's water comes from:

The DWR is one of two major suppliers to the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which provides about 53 percent of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's water.

The DWP also gets about 35 percent of its water from the Los Angeles Aqueduct, pumped from the Owens Valley, and about 11 percent from local groundwater. About 1 percent is recycled.

Los Angeles used about 199 billion gallons of water during the last fiscal year, according to DWP, with an average use of 144 gallons per person per day.

In other water news this week, UCLA is studying how L.A. deals with its graywater, and is only mildly satisfied. See this L.A. Times account:

With California heading toward a fourth year of drought, the state in August implemented emergency adoption of a revised graywater code, which allowed homeowners to install clothes washers or other single-fixture residential graywater systems in their homes without a construction permit as long as they followed 12 guidelines.

While graywater activists praised the state's embrace of a new graywater code, which reversed a 17-year-old policy that required permits and extensive filtering apparatus, they say education is the missing link....

In Southern California, about 54% of water consumption is attributed to urban residential use. Of the water used in a typical SoCal single-family home, 38% is for outdoor irrigation, 62% is for indoor use, according to the state Department of Water Resources' California Water Plan Update. Recapturing the graywater produced inside a home could, in many cases, provide all the water necessary for outside plantings.

Past City of Angles waterblogging here and here:

The image associated with this post was taken by Flickr user Floyd B. Bariscale. It was used under user Creative Commons license.

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