Today, that realness became more real. The IJ reported that the Marin Municipal Water District, MMWD, is calling now for voluntary water restrictions, warning that this winter is almost as bad as the one in 1976.
In 1976, I was a high school student in Kansas City where I had grown up. I had not heard of global warming, and I was only vaguely aware that there was a state called California (I was pretty un-worldly). I did not experience the drought of 1976, but I did experience the fires of 2020.
One of the things we are talking about on the Climate Action Committee is the need for us to adopt water reduction strategies ALL the time, knowing that, as the Cal EPA tells us, this kind of drought is our new normal.
Here are things that MMWD tells us we should be doing:
1. Water outside only before 9 am and after 7 pm.
2. Don't water when it's raining, or for two days after (if it ever does.
3. Don't wash sidewalks, walkways, or driveways (don't laugh, my wife likes to have me wash our white metal ROOF; not this year, now I have an excuse).
4. Fix Leaks
Believe it or not, these are part of the Water Code. I didn't even know there was a water code, and I don't know if there are water police. What I DO know is that this is really common sense, and that I am going to police myself; I think every one of us owes it to each other to be good neighbors and to do this stuff.
In addition, the MMWD recommends:
5. MMWD will give you a free water audit and help you figure out how to save water. By the way, if you save water you will save guess what else - MONEY.
6. Install aerators on your faucets.
7. Install only high efficiency dishwashers and washing machines.
8. If you are going to irrigate, use a WaterSense labelled controller
9. Better yet, rip out water-guzzling plants and put in low water use plants, especially natives.
10. Install a a graywater system. You can even get discounts on DIY Graywater systems from MMWD (I am going to do this this weekend).
So, water is a serious issue. Among other things, water is the largest consumer of energy in this state, and, therefore, among the largest source of our state's emissions. HERE.
Let's take care of each other, and let's take care of this precious resource. Thank you, MMWD, for giving us the heads up.