The Water Cooler

Central Basin Municipal Water District's Water Blog

Soaking in Water Knowledge

Changing the social norm on water conservation begins with education and the earlier we start, the more we’ll absorb.  Central Basin keeps this in mind while we work with local schools to offer educational programs.  One of the programs available is Water Squad Investigations, offered to 4th through 12th grade students.  Launched in 2006, the program is a collaboration between Central Basin, the Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts, and the Whittier Narrows Nature Center.   Read the rest of this entry »

Going Dirty for the Drought

Can you avoid a car wash for 60 days?

That’s the premise of the Los Angeles Waterkeeper’s latest campaign.  Go Dirty for the Drought challenges Californians to skip car washes for 60 days to help conserve water.  In return, the LA Waterkeeper sends participants a sticker to display on their windows.  Participants are asked to share images of the sticker on social media by using the hashtag DirtyCarPledge. Read the rest of this entry »

Talking all about Water: 2014 WaterSmart Innovations Conference & Expo

This year’s WaterSmart Innovations (WSI) Conference drew in more than 900 water professionals from throughout the Nation, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, United Kingdom, Netherlands, France, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.  The conference was held from October 8-10 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The annual conference brings ideas, projects and discussions on water use, conservation and efficiency.  Central Basin was selected as a participant for this year’s poster session and panel discussion.  Sandi Linares-Plimpton, Conservation and Outreach Officer, presented Central Basin’s Turf-It-Out project. She provided information on the District’s five demonstration gardens, process of creating a drought-friendly gardens, and challenges in such projects.  WSI participants were sent home with a Central Basin poppy seed packet to encourage them to start their very own gardens.

Continuing the conversation on creating a water-use change, Central Basin’s Public Affairs Specialist, Priscilla Segura, participated in WSI’s Outreach and Marketing Panel Discussion.  She provided a comprehensive presentation on the District’s social media campaigns, including steps to starting an online campaign, challenges and a list of best practices.

Presented by the Southern Nevada Water Authority, the WaterSmart Innovations Conference and Expo is the largest urban water-efficiency conference of its kind in the world. More information on the conference can be found on https://www.watersmartinnovations.com

Have You Taken the California Challenge?

There’s a new trend among online users that is bringing out the water activist in everyone.  Next 10, an organization focused on raising awareness on critical California issues, started the California Water Challenge to encourage users to look into the different ways water demand can be reduced.

Users are presented with focus areas to reduce water demand including urban water use, agricultural demand, water supply development, water recycling, lost water recovery and water storage.  With each category, users have the opportunity to select different ways of reducing water in that particular area of focus. With each category, users are provided with information on the impact and cost.

Towards the end of the challenge, users are presented with a series of questions in which they are asked to take a position, such as mandatory water restrictions, fines for overuse, water bond and water rates.  At the very end of the challenge, visitors are presented with a summary of their selected choices and their impacts.

The challenge is an opportunity for the online community to engage in deeper conversations on the different strategies that can be taken to conserve water. And further than conversations, the challenge is a way for community members to make physical changes.

Get your challenge on! Visit www.cawaterchallenge.org

September MWD Caucus Highlights Hydraulic Fracturing

Hydraulic fracturing is becoming one of the most talked about subjects in terms of natural resources and this month participants attending the Central MWD Caucus had the opportunity to learn more about its process and its impact on local water resources.

Hydraulic fracturing, also referred to as well stimulation, is the use of pressurized fluids to create fractures in shale formations allowing oil and natural gas to flow.   This process of extracting natural resources dates back to the late 1940s but has become more popular with the use of advanced technology. 

The process starts when a well is drilled thousands of feet below ground.  Once it has reached the right depth, the drill is removed and a steel casing is placed inside the well.  The casing is sealed with cement to prevent any groundwater contamination. The well is filled with several layers of steel casings to add layers of protection. A perforating tool then enters the well to begin the fracturing of shale formations. A fluid made of mostly water and sand (sometimes acid is used) is pumped into the well, allowing the natural gases to flow to the surface. Read the rest of this entry »

The Longest Straw

Ever wonder what it would be like to backpack over the entire Los Angeles Aqueduct? Film director, Samantha Bode and her crew will be hiking the over 200 miles that make up the aqueduct; that’s the same walking distance from London to Paris!  Catch the 60-day journey on The Longest Straw.

Airing in 2016, The Longest Straw will take viewers on a journey through the infrastructure that makes the aqueduct.  Their expedition begins at the cascades in Sylmar, then through Owens Lake and to Mono Lake.  Throughout their journey, Bode and her crew will interviewing locals, community leaders, water officials and others. Read the rest of this entry »

Rotate To a Green Garden

Flooded sidewalks can be a thing of the past.  Rotating sprinkler nozzles are becoming garden expert’s new favorite gadget because it eliminates runoff and uses 20% less water than its traditional counterpart.  The best part of these water efficient devices, there’s a rebate.

Read the rest of this entry »

August Central MWD Caucus Highlights Water Regulations and Restoration of the LA River

Severe dry conditions have led to a greater emphasis on the preservation of water resources. Two of the most recent topics include outdoor water regulations and the restoration of the LA River. Stakeholders attending the Central MWD Caucus were briefed on these two timely topics.

The State Water Resources Control Board’s water regulations went into effect on July 28th. Grace Chan, Resource and Planning Manager for Metropolitan Water District, explained that the regulations are effective until April 25, 2015 and can be renewed if needed.  The regulations state that Californians are prohibited from: Read the rest of this entry »

July is Smart Irrigation Month

It’s no secret that during hot summer days, water demand rises.  To raise awareness on the importance of efficient water use outdoors, the National Irrigation Association promotes July as Smart Irrigation Month. 

Launched in 2005, the campaign promotes smart irrigation devices and practices.  Communities are encouraged to use products that support outdoor water efficiency such as, rotating nozzles, weather based irrigation controllers and soil moisture sensor systems. Read the rest of this entry »

State Water Board Enacts Fines for Excessive Outdoor Water Use

Keep a close eye on your outdoor watering habits, it can now cost you up to $500 per day.  The State Water Resources Control Board approved emergency regulations that allow officials to fine residents for using excessive water outdoors.

The unprecedented action taken on Tuesday, comes after study results indicate that water use has increased by 1%.  Early January, Governor Brown asked for a voluntary water reduction of 20% and despite this call, water use has increased.

Under the new regulations, Californians are prohibited from: Read the rest of this entry »