MAYOR VILLARAIGOSA, LADWP UNVEIL FAR-REACHING
20-YEAR WATER STRATEGY FOR LA
To meet 100% of new water demand by 2030, unprecedented plan calls for
6-fold increase in water recycling and ramped up enforcement of water restrictions
LOS ANGELES – Unveiling a plan to ensure water continues to flow in Los Angeles despite a worsening outlook, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa today laid out a long-term strategy for the City to meet an expected growth in water demand over the next 20 years with aggressive conservation and an unprecedented water recycling program.
“LA’s future depends on our willingness to adopt an ethic of sustainability. If we don’t commit ourselves to conserving and recycling water, we will tap ourselves out,” said Mayor Villaraigosa.
“This plan makes a basic promise to our kids: We are going to recycle and conserve enough water to meet 100% of new demand.”
By 2030, the population of Los Angeles is expected to jump by 500,000 people, according to the Southern California Association of Governments, pushing up water demand in the City by 100,000 acre-feet per year, or 15 percent.
The plan calls for the first real enforcement of City water restrictions since the early 1990s, dishing penalties to residents who water lawns during prohibited hours and restaurants that serve water to customers who have not requested it.
On the technology side, the plan – “Securing LA’s Water Supply” – shifts the City’s focus from promoting efficient indoor plumbing to the outdoors, where Angeleno families use 30-40 percent of their water.
Laying out a series of incentives for businesses and families to reduce water use, the plan introduces a new program to distribute free “smart sprinklers” to every home in Los Angeles.
Together, these steps to conserve water will balance out half of the expected 15 percent jump in water demand by 2030. The remaining 50 percent of water demand will be met by the City’s first wide-scale plan for water recycling.
Raising the amount of water it purifies for recycling by six-fold by 2019, LADWP will expand its existing “purple pipe” system (distributing water for irrigation and industrial uses) and will flesh out a “groundwater replenishment” water-recycling program.
“I salute Mayor Villaraigosa for his bold leadership in announcing the ‘Securing L.A.’s Water Supply,'” said David Nahai, LADWP CEO and General Manager. “This is a bold and visionary strategy for securing L.A.’s water supply today and in the future by developing a locally sustainable water supply.”
“We are already seeing the effects of global warming, and as a City we need a comprehensive plan to address rising temperatures and a shrinking water supply,” said Councilwoman Wendy Greuel. “I applaud the Mayor for proposing this bold strategy to ensure our children and grandchildren have an ample water supply. It’s incumbent upon all Angelenos to do their part or we will face severe long-term consequences.”
Representing a more than $1.5 billion investment in infrastructure and conservation programs, the plan will be funded by a combination of fees on industrial polluters, grants and LADWP funds already budgeted for the plan. In total, the City will conserve or recycle enough water to fill 100,000 football fields – or the entire San Fernando Valley – with 1 foot deep of water, and enough water to supply 200,000 homes each year.
“Outreach is essential if we truly want to make an impact and this water plan highlights the importance of engaging our community in this goal,” said Councilwoman Jan Perry, who chairs the City’s Energy and the Environment Committee. “I am also confident that with new technologies we will be able to better conserve water by reclaiming and reusing our captured stormwater. This along with consumer conservation efforts will help us reach our goal.”
“Water is a precious commodity in Los Angeles, and it will only get more scarce as climate change grips our region. With more intense storms and hotter summers on the way, we need to capture, conserve, and recycle every last drop,” said Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, Chair of the Council Committee on Public Works.
Further information about “Securing L.A.’s Water Supply”
Complete “Securing L.A.’s Water Supply”