During the recent historic drought, Californians responded to the call for emergency statewide water use reductions, which the state has recognized as a highly successful outcome. However, this significant reduction in water demands has brought to light some unintended consequences of declining flows that ripple throughout the interconnected urban water cycle. These observations offer a preview into the potential impact of establishing permanent indoor water use targets at or below the thresholds achieved as a result of the governor’s emergency conservation mandate.
California’s water industry leaders, including regulators and purveyors, are working to understand the system-wide impacts of increased conservation so that decision makers are better informed as they address California’s current and future water challenges.
Through a partnership with California Association of Sanitation Agencies (CASA), Water Research Foundation(WRF), WateReuse California, and California Water Environment Association(CWEA), California WaterUrban Agencies(CUWA) has developed this white paper to provide decisionmakers, water/wastewater system managers, and other stakeholders an understanding of the impacts of declining flows resulting from substantial reductions in indoor water use and how utilities are adapting to these circumstances.