Despite the continuing drought and hot weather, area residents have joined others throughout the state to decrease water consumption by 31.3 percent during the month of July, according to statistics from the California Water Board.
The decrease exceeds Gov. Jerry Brown’s call for a 25 percent reduction compared to 2013 water use figures.
To achieve the governor’s mandate, cities and other water providers were given goals last spring to reduce consumption based on current usage and population, with those goals to be met by February 2016.
Most area cities were given goals ranging from a 15 percent to a 20 percent decrease in consumption. During the month of July most area cities surpassed those goals or at least kept pace with their reduction efforts.
“Californians’ response to the severity of the drought this summer is now in high gear and shows that they get that we are in the drought of our lives,” said Felicia Marcus, chair of the State Water Resources Control Board. “This isn’t your mother’s drought or your grandmother’s drought, this is the drought of the century.”
The Santa Fe Springs Municipal Water System had a “conservation standard” of 16 percent, but has almost doubled the water reduction goal by reaching 28.6 percent.
Other cities with large reductions reported this summer include Alhambra, 28.5 percent (over its goal of 24 percent); Downey, 26.1 percent (achieving its goal of 20 percent); Pico Rivera, 21.6 percent (over its goal of 16); Whittier, 24.3 percent (beating its state goal of 20); and Bellflower Somerset, down 20.7 percent, (almost matching its goal of 20 percent).
Paramount reduced its water use by 18.5 percent, beating its goal of 12 percent. Huntington Park reduced its use by 16.3 percent, which doubled its “conservation standard” of eight percent. Lynwood reduced consumption by 16.1 percent, achieving its goal of 16 percent; and South Gate decreased use by 14.5 percent, beating its goal of 12 percent.
Norwalk reduced its use by 18.5 percent, not quite meeting its goal of 20 percent; while Monterey Park had a similar 18.8 percent reduction with a goal of 20 percent.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power announced its customers had reduced usage by 21 percent, besting the 16 percent target set by the state.
Other cities meeting their goals were Compton, with a decrease of 16.7 percent, over its goal of eight percent; and Inglewood, with a 15.32 percent reduction, beating the state-allocated goal of 12 percent.
Among private providers, customers of Park Water reduced use by 28.5 percent, with a goal of just eight percent; Golden State Water in Bell and Bell Gardens reduced used by 19.9 percent against a goal of eight percent; and Golden State Water of Norwalk reduced use by 23 percent from a goal of 12 percent.
Golden State Water in Culver City recorded a reduction of 19.8 percent from a goal of 16 percent; Golden State Water in San Gabriel reduced use by 15.6 percent from a goal of 12 percent; and California Water Service of East Los Angeles reduced use by 71.6 percent from a goal of eight percent.
Among water districts served by governing boards, Montebello Land and Water, reduced its water use by 18 percent, with a goal of 16 percent; and the Pico Water District reduced consumption by 22.9 percent, falling short of its goal of 24 percent.
City News Service also contributed to this story.