The Regional Water Authority, representing 22 water providers serving 2.2 million people in the Sacramento region, issued the following statement in response to today’s manual snow survey conducted at Phillips Station by the California Department of Water Resources, which found snowpack to be significantly below average.
“Once again, we are experiencing extremes—transitioning from historic snow and rainfall in 2022-23 to an unusually dry start to winter in 2023-24. Such dramatic shifts from flood to drought are projected to become more frequent and intense with climate change.
“The good news is that we can adapt to these climate challenges with the Sacramento Regional Water Bank (Water Bank).
“The Water Bank is the reservoir under our feet that can hold twice the volume of water as Folsom Lake. With water banking, local water managers coordinate water use between rivers and the underground aquifer. During wet periods, water providers utilize more river water, allowing the groundwater aquifer to replenish. In dry times, increased use of groundwater preserves more water in rivers, sustaining the environment.
“In addition to effectively managing water supplies, the region also incorporates demand management strategies like water efficiency. Water efficiency is also an important tool in our climate resiliency strategy, regardless of weather conditions. Here are several easy tips for winter water efficiency:
- “Keep sprinklers turned off—winter’s cooler, shorter days means your yard doesn’t need extra water. Before resuming use, check soil moisture with a moisture meter or by digging down with a hand shovel during dry spells.
- “Check and fix leaky toilets and faucets within 48 hours. The most common household leak, a toilet leak, can waste up to 200 gallons of water per day—enough water to wash seven loads of laundry every day for a month. Detect leaks by adding food coloring or a dye tab to the tank; if color appears in the bowl after 15 minutes, there is a leak.
- “Replace older toilets with WaterSense-labeled high-efficiency models. This upgrade can reduce toilet water use by 20 to 60 percent—that’s nearly 13,000 gallons of water savings for your home every year.
“Water providers are here to help, with many offering rebates for replacing inefficient fixtures. These include rebates for toilets and clothes washers, and upgrades to water-wasting sprinklers and irrigation equipment. Explore rebates at BeWaterSmart.info/rebates.
“Learn more about the Water Bank and the region’s more climate-resilient water future at SacWaterBank.com.”
The Regional Water Authority (RWA) is a joint powers authority representing nearly two dozen water providers serving 2.2 million people in the greater Sacramento region. Formed in 2001, its primary mission is to help its members protect and enhance the reliability, availability, affordability and quality of water resources. Learn more at rwah2o.org.