Conservation has long been a part of life in Los Angeles, but truth be told, residents of the Sacramento area use many more gallons per person, per day. Under state law, urban water systems must reduce per capita water use by 20 percent by 2020. As the drought continues, we asked readers: What more should the city of Sacramento, residents and businesses be doing to conserve water?
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Buckets in the shower
Re “City saves water, finally” (Forum, Foon Rhee, Feb. 23): Because of the drought, I have installed a low-flow toilet. I do not flush it after every use. Am I there yet?
There are two 5-gallon buckets in the shower. One catches the cool water while waiting for the hot water. The other catches the gray water. The clean water goes to the garden, the other goes to flush the toilet. Am I there yet?
Next to the bathroom sink are two cups, one for rinsing my toothbrush, the other for rinsing my mouth. Am I there yet?
How can I tell if I have cut water consumption by 20 percent? We do not have water meters. Are we there yet?
– Patrick Powers, Sacramento
Where’s the fairness?
Water use is not waste. Washing dishes and clothes, showering, flushing toilets, watering lawns are normal activities, not waste. In times of drought they may need curtailment due to a supply shortage, but Sacramento has two rivers and should not normally require living like being in a desert, just so those who do can have more water from us.
Simple, direct use of water meters and tiered water rates are not fair ways to identify or curtail water waste, as they are based only on amount, not considering actual individual living needs, apartment or house, family size, lot size, etc.
Required percent cutbacks harm those who already conserve, but are easy for gross users. With tiered rates the rich can afford to waste, while the rest may suffer. For fairness, allocation amounts must be included in these based on individual living needs.
This is in progress in the Monterey area.
– Bill Jurkovich, Citrus Heights