Water Authority Ends Shortage Allocations, Lifts Call for Mandatory Use Restrictions
Agency urges continued water efficiency, focus on fixing supply and ecological problems in the Bay-Delta
|Problems in the Bay-Delta (Bay-Delta waterways shown above) still threaten statewide water supply reliability.|
Significant improvements in this year's weather and water storage led the San Diego County Water Authority Board of Directors today to end mandatory urban and agricultural water supply cutbacks, and to lift the agency's regionwide call for mandatory water use restrictions.
The board also reinforced the need for the region to continue to use water wisely, and called upon the state of California to finalize a financially viable plan to solve significant problems plaguing the Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay-Delta, the hub of California's State Water Project system.
"While our latest drought is over, our state's water supply system is still in crisis," said Water Authority Board Chair Michael T. Hogan. "Thanks to a very wet year and outstanding water-saving efforts by our region's residents, businesses and agricultural community, we can put our drought response tools back in the toolbox - for now. But we cannot forget that ensuring a safe and reliable water supply is a long-term challenge here in semi-arid Southern California. We must solve the water supply and ecological problems in the Bay-Delta that led to cuts in water deliveries from State Water Project and contributed to our recent supply shortages."
Effective April 29, the Water Authority will restore full urban water deliveries to its 24 member retail water agencies, which had been required to comply with a regional 8 percent supply cut since July 2009. The board action also restores full agricultural water deliveries by the Water Authority, which had been cut 13 percent for some agricultural customers since July 2009.
The Board action deactivated the Water Authority's Water Shortage and Drought Response Plan and ended the drought response levels in its Drought Response Conservation Program Ordinance. The region had been in a Level 2 Drought Alert condition, which signaled local water agencies to enact conservation-based rates or mandatory water use restrictions to help curb demand.
In taking the action to end supply cutbacks and mandatory water use restrictions, the board reinforced the importance for residents and businesses to continue efficient water use practices in the face ongoing supply challenges and the long-term achievement of a state-mandated 20 percent reduction in water use by 2020.
To read a full news release, click here.
For more details, visit the SDCWA Top Issues page.