“Californians should brace for another year of brown lawns, tight water restrictions and increased calls for conservation.” Hayley Smith, Los Angeles Times
California water managers warned that substantially reduced water allocations are likely for 2023, as the state rounds another year of drought.
We don’t know how much precipitation to expect from winter 2023, but state officials are remaining conservative in their forecasting after last year’s exceptionally dry winter. Lake Oroville, the largest reservoir on the State Water Project, is at just above half of its average capacity for this time of year. The current three year drought has also reduced snowmelt to the Colorado River to the point that its reservoirs are at risk of reaching “dead pool” status, which describes the point at which water drops below a dam’s lowest intake valve.
In consideration of the ongoing drought, the Department of Water Resources announced an initial allocation of only 5% of requested supplies from the State Water Project — a system of reservoirs, canals and dams that serves as an essential component of California’s water system, feeding 29 agencies that together provide water for about 27 million Californians.
“For many residents, this means the available water supply could remain at a trickle”
For many residents, this means the available water supply “could remain at a trickle,” said Adel Hagekhalil, general manager of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, the region’s massive wholesaler.
“We are in the dawn of a new era of State Water Project management as a changing climate disrupts the timing of California’s hydrology, and hotter and drier conditions absorb more water into the atmosphere and ground,” DWR director Karla Nemeth said in a statement. “We all need to adapt and redouble our efforts to conserve this precious resource.”
Should storage levels improve as the wet season progresses, the DWR will consider increasing the allocation, Nemeth said. The state is also working to employ new technologies such as aerial snow surveys to help improve its forecasts.
The final allocation should be determined by May or June, say state officials.
What you can do
It’s important for homeowners and businesses to be proactive rather than reactive in terms of water use. The last thing anyone needs is large water waste and sinking property values.
You can avoid fines and conserve water by switching to drought-friendly landscaping. Local governments across California are offering rebates on drought-friendly landscaping. San Francisco County is offering up to $4 per square foot to replace your existing lawn. Not far behind them Orange County, Coachella Valley Water District, and Madera are all offering $3 rebates!
For more information on rebates being offered near you, visit calwep.org/programs/rebates/.
Artificial grass takes traditional lawns’ timeless look and recreates it using modern innovation. The result is a product that’s hypoallergenic, drought-friendly, and surprisingly long lasting. In fact, our products are backed by up to 16 year warranties!
And unlike hardscaping, artificial turf offers functional space for entertainment and recreation. Because does anyone really want to play football or host a birthday party on rocks?
Most rebate programs will accept artificial turf as a drought-friendly alternative to natural grass. For help finding the best artificial grass for you, get expert advice from an AGL associate. We’re so confident in the quality of our product that we’re willing to ship free samples straight to your door!