Does water conservation really work?

Published: Friday, Jan. 24, 2014 - 2:10 pm

Re “State of emergency declared in drought” (Page A1, Jan. 18): Are the governor's request and Sacramento city's restrictions really helping conserve water? I live in a part of Sacramento where the water is pumped from a river, treated and passed through my home via the toilet, showers, laundry, etc. After use at my home, the water goes through a sewage plant and is returned to the river. Then, most of the water flows into the ocean, except about 25 percent, which is pumped from the Delta to the Central Valley and to Southern California. So, how does not flushing a toilet in Sacramento save water? Also, if I wash my car out of a bucket, what water is saved? The wash water returns to the river via the storm drain. Likewise, excess irrigation that floods gutters still ends up back in the river via the storm drains. Are our water conservation efforts effective or just symbolic steps to appease the political power centers in Southern California and the Bay Area?

-- William Hagberry, Sacramento

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