Torrential rains have brought drought relief to California, and while this is good news throughout the state, it is perhaps most welcome here in SoCal, where the drought did the most damage. Drought is officially over in many parts of the state, but it’s still ongoing in Southern California, and that’s just one reason why water conservation is still important.
So, with drought conditions reduced and even eliminated in so many places, why should Californians continue focusing on water conservation? Well, this wonderful drought relief isn’t guaranteed to last. Long-term weather patterns are difficult to predict, but given Southern California’s dry, drought-prone history, it’s safe to assume that we’ll see severe conditions return throughout the region. Even the significant Sierra Nevada snowpack that accumulated this winter may not last long if temperatures go up and stay there in the coming months.
This all means that you should maintain any water conservation measures you currently have in place, especially with respect to your landscaping. Xeriscaping, native plant gardens and other water-saving solutions are all smart long-term strategies to protect your local water resources. The drought may be better than it was even just a few months ago, but that doesn’t mean that water-hogging landscapes are suddenly a good idea.
Water is a Finite Resource
Ultimately, water resources are finite, and conservation should be a priority for everyone, even for our neighbors in rainy states like Oregon and Washington. The need for conservation is especially pressing in Southern California, though, because there’s such a strain on our existing water resources, even when they’re full. If you’ve ever been to Lake Mead, you’ve seen what a toll water consumption can take on a seemingly massive body of water. Conservation is a matter of good sense regardless of how much rain we get in a single season.
Keep in mind, too, that water conservation doesn’t have to mean big sacrifices. You can keep your ordinary water usage habits in place for essentials like showering, washing your hands and cooking, but be mindful of major water usage activities, especially where your landscaping is concerned. Water consumption is a luxury, and as with all good things, moderation is important.
If you don’t have an efficient water-conserving landscape in place already, now’s a good time to make the switch. After all, water supplies may be back up to healthy levels in most parts of the state, but do you really want to start paying high water bills again?