E-Newsletter August 2009
A Billion Gallons of Water Saved...Now What? 
The water saving numbers are in for the 12 month period ending June 30, 2009, and Anaheim utility customers collectively saved a billion gallons of water.  That's enough to serve 7,000 homes for a year.  Good job Anaheim!

By reaching the billion gallon mark, we absolutely crushed our conservation goal of 950 million gallons for the 12 months ending  June 30, 2009. 

If we continue to conserve at this pace in the current fiscal year, ending June 30, 2010, Anaheim will be well positioned to comply with the mandatory supply cutback imposed by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California that began on July 1, 2009. 

With such good news it is natural to wonder if it's okay to ease up on our water saving efforts?  This is a temptation that we have to resist, especially with news that there may be a wet winter on the way given the El Niņo condition that appears to be forming in the Pacific.
Remember, this drought was years in the making.  Therefore, it is not likely to be over in one winter of above normal rainfall.  What's more, it isn't necessarily a good thing for our future to count on less growth in California in order to ease our demand water. 

Therefore, to prosper in a reduced water environment, we must continue to incorporate water efficient habits into our daily lives.  We are in this together.  You can count on us to continue making water saving investments designed to help reduce water used for landscaping and to research and invest in new water supply technologies.


Marcie L. Edwards
Anaheim Public Utilities General Manager
Headlines: Relief on the Way with El Niņo Condition This Winter?
(Pictured above) Sea surface temperatures along the equatorial Eastern Pacific, as of July 1, are at least one degree above average - a sign of El Niņo condition. Source: NOAA. 

According to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists, an El Niņo condition is forming in the Pacific.  If this condition persists through the 2009-10 winter season as predicted, it could bring, "beneficial precipitation to the arid Southwest" and possibly severe winter storms to California.

Of course, the bottom line could be significant relief to the multi-year drought in California and perhaps the Colorado River watershed, a major source of imported water for our region.  The Colorado River Basin has sufferred from dry weather for the past 8 years.  On average, Anaheim receives approximately 13 inches of rainfall every year and the impacts of El Niņo condition can double Anaheim's yearly rainfall average.

However, even if an El Niņo condition brings more rain, a single wet year still doesn't affect the fundamental picture of higher water demand and increasing willingness of the judiciary to restrict water imports to Southern California from Northern California due to environmental concerns. 
Ideas: Get Makeover Ideas from the Renovated Waterwise Garden
Looking for landscape ideas to perfect a beautiful garden on a water budget that would even make a camel blush?

Dread the thought of a "waterwise" garden that looks like a lunar landscape?

APU invites weekend and professional landscapers to come down to the newly renovated Waterwise Demonstration Garden (dedicated to Sally White) at the Anaheim Amtrak Station located near Anaheim Stadium. Access to the garden is through the stadium parking lot off of Katella Ave. at the Grove Theater of Anaheim.

 water wise garden map-new
The renovation, which was completed in June, features a variety of California-friendly plants designed to illustrate the beauty of waterwise landscaping.  In addition, water efficient irrigation systems were also installed in the garden to further increase water conservation.

The garden will soon have new signs and information pamphlets for visitors to take these garden ideas home.

For more information on California-friendly plants click here.
Youth Spotlight: A Surprised Samuel Anaya Wins Water Conservation Video Contest
Congratulations to Samuel Anaya of Anaheim High School for submitting the winning video in APU's inaugural Student Water Conservation Video Contest.

anaya_calkins (Pictured left) Samuel Anaya accepting his award from Don Calkins, assistant general manager of Anaheim's city-owned water utility. 
For his efforts, Samuel won a MacBook laptop which will help him in his future cinematic (and scholastic) efforts.

APU is currently showcasing Samuel's video as a public service announcement on Anaheim Community TV and you can view his winning video on our website.

Helpful Hints: How to Report Water Waste                 

Anaheim Anytime logoOver the last few months, we've been encouraging our customers to report water waste online via Anaheim Anytime or calling 311. It's important to include as much information as possible. To help us stop water waste, here are some helpful reporting hints:

Provide a specific street address of the location

Tell us the type of water waste observed, such as: 

  • Possible broken sprinkler or pipe
  • Excessive water runoff
  • Sprinkler overspray onto walkways
  • Hosing/spraying down driveway or sidewalk
  • Other

Specify the type of location:

This will help us to determine what types of follow-up actions we can take  
  • Residence
  • Business
  • City Property
  • Other

Thank you for your continued help to save water. To report water waste, click here.

Leading: APU Cuts Landscape Water Use at Lenain with SmarTimers


APU's Water System just got a little smarter about irrigating the 77 acres of landscape at its Lenain Water Treatment Plant located in Anaheim's arid hill and canyon area.  
(Pictured Left) Aerial view of the Lenain Plant.
Two SmarTimer irrigation units, were installed during June 2009 at Lenain. For this initial investment of $3,500, APU will reduce landscape water use at the facility by at least 25%. In general, SmarTimer irrigation units save approximately 105,902 gallons per acre foot of irrigation water when used correctly.
rme_smartimer2APU chose the RME Eagle units because of their user-friendly features and high reliability. This particular SmarTimer model uses evapotranspiration technology (ET). The ET is a controller system that uses real time data that calculates exactly how much water your plants need on a daily basis.  The calculations are based on sun exposure, the weather, wind, and the type of soil are in your garden.
(Pictured Left) A SmarTimer unit in a field location at Lenain.
Additional features include a communication card that provides remote control capability via the internet, as well as leak detection features in the irrigation system at Lenain.  


(Pictured Right) Second  SmarTimer unit on a building at Lenain. 
"The SmarTimer irrigation system has been a great addition in helping Lenain conserve are outdoor water use.  It is truly a unique piece of technology that saves us time, water and money,"  said Mick Sharples, water production technician supervisor.
To get more information on what type of irrigation is best for your landscape, click here or check out your local irrigation supply store.
In This Issue
A Billion Saved. Now What?
Headlines: El Nino Condition This Winter?
Ideas: Waterwise Garden Makeover
Youth: Anaya Wins Video Contest
Helpful Hints for Reporting Waste
Leading: SmarTimers at Lenain
A Billion Gallons Saved & Counting


Congratulations Anaheim. For the 12 month period ending June 30, 2009, you lowered water use by over a billion gallons.
That's enough to serve 7,000 homes for a year. Together we can help Anaheim flourish on less water.     
Save Water Anaheim!


How to Make Your Garden more California Friendly...  
california poppy
Tune up your irrigation system
An irrigation system that has leaks, broken parts  can be the biggest water waster of all.

Mulch your plant beds
Mulch minimizes water loss, helps control weeds, and returns nutrients to the soil as it decomposes.

Change your plants
Select California-friendly plants that have low water needs and flower colors that you like.

Remember, most new plants need a little more water until they get established, but once they are growing turn the water down to what they need. With this in mind, you may want to postpone on putting in new plants until after summer.

For more on creating a thriving garden under drought conditions, click here.

Tough Questions for a Tough Water  Situation

Why should I save water when I see others being " water wasters"?

How long is Anaheim asking its customers to conserve?

What is Anaheim doing in water conservation to lead by example?

Get the Answers You Need in the...
 water situation report

For more information please contact Issis Macias at imacias@anaheim.net


Water Rebate Update
Despite MWD's recent rebate funding shortage, APU will continue to provide programs that will help customers make water efficiency investments.

From July 2009 through June 2010, APU will fund water conservation rebates and programs for our customers.

To learn more about our water conservation rebates and programs click here.

Leave a Friendly Reminder

If you spot water waste, please let us know and we'll send a friendly reminder to the home or business that you think may be the source of the water waste. Call 311 from any Anaheim based landline, (714) 765-4311 from your cell phone, or click here to submit your request.

Click on image below for a larger view of the door hanger:


City Services online and on-demand
Web and text based tools give you access 24/7!
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Visit anaheim.net or call 311 from any Anaheim phone. From outside the city limits call 714-765-4311