Los Angeles Water Restrictions On the Way?

Los Angeles Water Restrictions On the Way?

Gregory Han
May 16, 2008

We admit, water consumption isn't something we normally worry about so much. But we should. Today I bathed, washed my car (but all within 5 minutes at a DIY car wash) and did a couple loads of laundry, not to mention the smaller amounts of H20 used to brush my teeth or flush the toilet. There's no way getting around it...LA is going to be dry-mouthed soon with growing water demands because of daily uses as those listed above multiplied by millions. And so it looks like we're gonna be seeing some residential water restrictions again...

*For example, residents would be urged to change their clothes' washers, and new restrictions would be placed on how and when they could water lawns and clean cars.

Financial incentives and building code changes would be used to incorporate high-tech conservation equipment in homes and businesses. Builders would be pushed to install waterless urinals, weather-sensitive sprinkler systems and porous parking lot paving that allows rain to percolate into groundwater supplies.

Just to meet a 15% increase in demand by 2030, officials say 32 billion gallons a year will have to be saved or recaptured -- enough to cover the San Fernando Valley with a foot of water.

Prohibitions during the 1990s drought -- banning residents from washing driveways and sidewalks, letting sprinklers flood into gutters and watering grass in midday -- would be enforced again, with additional restrictions. One part of the proposal would limit lawn watering to certain days of the week.

We'll also be purifying wastewater into drinking water, a "toilet to tap" initiative which has been blocked a few times due to cost and residents' aversion to the concept. An article in the Wall Street Journal outlines the three-step process as: "Sewer water that has already been treated by the county's sanitation district goes through a microfilter to remove solids and bacteria. It then undergoes a reverse-osmosis treatment, which passes the water through a membrane filter that removes viruses, salts, pharmaceuticals and other materials. Finally, it is treated with ultraviolet light and hydrogen peroxide to get rid of contaminants that are left."

Get those Brita and Pur filters ready, Angelenos!

-*LA Times: L.A. prepares massive water-conservation plan

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